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Fans can play HR Derby Challenge

Fans can play HR Derby Challenge

Eight Major League players were invited to participate in the actual CENTURY 21 Home Run Derby Monday night during All-Star Game festivities in Detroit, and now there is actually an opportunity for everyone to participate.

Fans can enter now at MLB.com to play the Home Run Derby Challenge. It is a bracket-style game that lets you try to predict the correct order of finish for all three rounds of the competition. One entry per e-mail address is allowed, and entries will be accepted right up until Monday's 8 p.m. ET start of the event on ESPN.

If someone correctly predicts the entire Home Run Derby, then that person wins $21,000 from CENTURY 21. Contestants will be asked to submit two tiebreaker answers, so those tiebreakers would determine an overall winner of that cash prize should more than one person correctly predict the whole event.

If no one picks the correct order of finish for the three rounds, then the fan with the most correct picks will win two tickets to the 2006 All-Star Game in Pittsburgh.

So, who are your choices for this contest? The field for Monday's event includes Bobby Abreu of the Philadelphia Phillies, Jason Bay of the Pittsburgh Pirates, Hee-Seop Choi of the Los Angeles Dodgers, Andruw Jones of the Atlanta Braves, Carlos Lee of the Milwaukee Brewers, David Ortiz of the Boston Red Sox, Ivan Rodriguez of the host Detroit Tigers and Mark Teixeira of the Texas Rangers.

Those participants will have a new twist thrown at them for this year's Home Run Derby, and that also means another opportunity for fans everywhere: the Home Run Derby Gold Ball sweepstakes, coming Monday on MLB.com. Look for more information here on Monday, and look for an exciting addition to this year's event.

A Golden Home Run Ball will be substituted immediately after each participant in the CENTURY 21 Home Run Derby has recorded his ninth out. The balls are two-toned, gold and white, and one of those will be used until that batter's 10th out is recorded.

For every home run hit by a CENTURY 21 Home Run Derby participant after his ninth out, Major League Baseball and CENTURY 21 will combine to donate $21,000 to charity. The charity recipients will be Boys & Girls Clubs of America, the official charity of Major League Baseball, and Easter Seals, the official charity of Century 21 Real Estate LLC. Since 2000, a total of 37 home runs have been hit in the CENTURY 21 Home Run Derby after a batter had nine outs.

"Major League Baseball has a social responsibility to give back to the community and we are constantly assessing new and meaningful ways to do that," said Commissoner Bud Selig. "Adding such a significant charitable component to the CENTURY 21 Home Run Derby that benefits two outstanding organizations like Boys & Girls Clubs of America and Easter Seals is another example of ways in which baseball can use high-profile events to raise awareness and funding for institutions that provide invaluable help to communities."

Rawlings has produced a limited edition of 2,005 commemorative CENTURY 21 Home Run Derby gold baseballs. The baseballs are now available for sale exclusively at the MLB.com Shop. A portion of proceeds from sales of CENTURY 21 Home Run Derby gold baseballs will benefit Boys & Girls Clubs of America and Easter Seals.

The Home Run Derby Gold Ball sweepstakes at MLB.com will be a way for fans to predict how many Golden Home Run Balls will leave the yard that night. It will be a simple challenge, and just another fun way to participate in this All-Star Game excitement.

This is the time of year when you can really feel the power in Major League Baseball. Eight Major Leaguers will supply it on the field at Comerica Park. The only difference is that now everyone else can feel it, too.

Mark Newman is enterprise editor for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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