Major League Baseball is following in the NFL’s footsteps by taking its act across the pond.
The league will host a home run derby at London’s Hyde Park on July 4 as part of a multi-day baseball fan experience dubbed “MLB Battlegrounds.” The derby pits the Boston Red Sox against the Los Angeles Dodgers and will feature three former All-Stars: Carlos Pena and Cliff Floyd representing the Red Sox and Shawn Green representing the Dodgers.
Of course, Pena and Floyd each played just one year in Boston and aren’t usually associated with the club, but MLB’s apparent goal is to have fans pick a side between two of the league’s most highly recognizable franchises. Pena, Floyd and Green also will be joined in the home run derby by “stars of football (soccer), cricket and hockey,” who will choose whether to bat for Boston or Los Angeles.
The derby is the highlight of several events throughout the week that will feature an “incredible collision of sport, culture and tech,” per MLB.com. Other attractions include an interactive virtual reality experience as well as music and food from both Boston and L.A.
These festivities still are completely separate from MLB’s own Midsummer Classic, which will be held July 11 at Marlins Park. The league’s annual Home Run Derby, which Miami Marlins slugger Giancarlo Stanton won in historic fashion last year, will go down a day earlier on July 10.
Thumbnail photo via Matthew O’Haren/USA TODAY Sports Images