deGrom hoping for chance to face Trout in ASG

deGrom hoping for chance to face Trout in ASG

NEW YORK -- As a kid in DeLeon Springs, Fla., what truly enamored Jacob deGrom about watching All-Star Weekend was the Home Run Derby. He'll have a front row seat at this year's version, the Gillette Home Run Derby presented by Head & Shoulders on Monday night, as part of a first-time All-Star experience deGrom is excited to be a part of.

Just don't expect him to be one of those guys videotaping the thing.

"I was never big into that," deGrom said.

deGrom came away with one goal for the week after asking teammates Daniel Murphy, Michael Cuddyer and David Wright, all former All-Stars, about what to expect in Cincinnati. "Enjoy yourself and have fun," they told him.

"It's a great honor. It's kind of settling in now," deGrom said of his selection. "I definitely feel fortunate."

For deGrom, part of having fun is being a part of and competing against the best baseball has to offer. In that light, deGrom said he's looking forward to facing Mike Trout if the situation dictates.

"He's a great hitter," deGrom said. "I'd like to face him and try to get him out."

The reigning NL Rookie of the Year will be surrounded by his "whole family," he said, when as the Mets' lone participant, he represents a pitching staff that ranks third in baseball with a 3.23 ERA. His selection came deservedly after connecting a second-half surge in his rookie year with a monster first half of 2015. If it weren't for Zack Greinke's otherworldly season (1.39 ERA), deGrom's numbers would be spearheading his case to start the game.

As they stand, they're still impressive.

DeGrom's 2.14 ERA ranks fourth in the National League, his 0.92 WHIP fourth, his .206 batting average against is fifth and his 112 strikeouts are tied for 10th. He's allowed just 84 hits in 113 2/3 innings. For context: that's 12 fewer than Shelby Miller in the same amount of innings, and 29 fewer than Gerrit Cole in 3 2/3 fewer frames.

During the All-Star Game presented by T-Mobile in Cincinnati on Tuesday, fans can once again visit MLB.com to submit their choice for the Ted Williams Most Valuable Player Award presented by Chevrolet. Voting exclusively at MLB.com, online and via their mobile devices in the 2015 All-Star Game MVP Vote presented by Chevrolet, the fans' collective voice will represent 20 percent of the overall vote that determines the recipient of the Arch Ward Trophy.

MLB.TV Premium subscribers will be able to live stream the All-Star Game via MLB.TV through FOX's participating video providers. Access will be available across more than 400 supported MLB.TV platforms, including the award-winning MLB.com At Bat app. MLB.com will provide extensive online coverage of the All-Star Week festivities, including the 2015 Gillette Home Run Derby presented by Head & Shoulders, part of Gatorade All-Star Workout Day on Monday. The Derby will feature a new format with brackets and timed rounds and will be broadcast live by ESPN and MLB.com beginning at 8 p.m. ET.

The 86th Midsummer Classic will be televised nationally by FOX Sports (coverage begins 7 p.m. ET), in Canada by Rogers Sportsnet and RDS, and worldwide by partners in more than 160 countries. ESPN Radio and ESPN Radio Deportes will provide exclusive national radio coverage of the All-Star Game. MLB Network and SiriusXM will also provide comprehensive All-Star Week coverage. For more information, please visit allstargame.com.

deGrom's 9-6 record already matches his output from 2014, when he pitched to a 2.69 ERA in 22 starts. The biggest difference this season is his newfound confidence to throw any pitch in any count.

"I think it's been how I adjust to hitters during the game. My offspeed pitches are a little more consistent," deGrom said. "Being able to throw 3-2 sliders and changeups and stuff like that has helped me out a lot. Last year, I would probably throw a fastball 3-2 every time."

deGrom was reminded that Trout is a pretty good fastball hitter. "We'll see, I guess," he said with a smirk.

Joe Trezza is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.