HRD not likely for Rizzo, Bryant this year

Cubs sluggers participated in 2015 event at Great American Ball Park

HRD not likely for Rizzo, Bryant this year

WASHINGTON -- Kris Bryant and Anthony Rizzo enjoyed participating in the Home Run Derby at last year's All-Star Game, but the two Cubs would prefer to skip this year's hitting competition event if asked to participate.

Bryant and Rizzo were both ousted in the first round of the 2015 event, held at Great American Ball Park. Bryant lost to the Angels' Albert Pujols, while Rizzo was bumped by the Blue Jays' Josh Donaldson.

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"I'm not sure yet," Rizzo said on Wednesday. "We'll see where we're at when it comes. You never know."

Rizzo did like the thought of hitting in Cincinnati, where he's hit 10 home runs in 34 games. He's hit two home runs in 33 games at Petco Park in San Diego.

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"Last year was awesome, and in Cincinnati, a small park," Rizzo said.

Bryant's father, Mike, pitched to his son in the event, but the third baseman wasn't sure he could do that again. Mike Bryant injured his back during the offseason.

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"I don't really want to," Bryant said on Wednesday about participating in the Derby. "My mind could change, but I have to get there first. There's still a lot of baseball to be played."

Bryant is the top vote-getter in the latest fan balloting among National League third basemen. He did have a solution.

"Last year was fun," Bryant said. "If they're going to ask me, maybe I'll let Jake [Arrieta] do it. He wants to do it. It could be Jake versus [Madison] Bumgarner. It was fun last year, but it was really tiring, and I didn't get to enjoy the moment as much as I really wanted to. It was still very fun."

Arrieta has made it clear he'd like to see pitchers get involved in the Home Run Derby.

Carrie Muskat has covered the Cubs since 1987, and for since 2001. She writes a blog, Muskat Ramblings. You can follow her on Twitter @CarrieMuskat and listen to her podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.