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Cabrera joins growing Derby field

Cabrera joins growing Derby field

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The field for the State Farm Home Run Derby is halfway there.

Florida's Miguel Cabrera confirmed Thursday he accepted an invitation to participate in Monday night's event at San Francisco's AT&T Park, joining Philadelphia's Ryan Howard, Minnesota's Justin Morneau and Milwaukee's Prince Fielder in the field of eight.

But two other All-Stars, San Francisco's Barry Bonds and Cincinnati's Ken Griffey Jr., said they will not take part.

"I said no, and I meant no," Bonds told MLB.com before the Giants closed a three-game series against the Reds at Great American Ball Park.

Later, Bonds, who turns 43 on July 24, reiterated that stance to a group of writers.

"There are too many rounds [three]," he said. "It takes too much out of you."

Griffey, who has 22 home runs, third most in the NL, said he turned down an invitation to participate.

"I'm not doing it," Griffey said. "I have personal reasons."

His teammate, Reds outfielder Adam Dunn, is second in the NL with 23 home runs. Dunn isn't on the All-Star team and hasn't been contacted by MLB.

"I wouldn't do it if they did [contact me]," Dunn said. "I have no interest."

Cabrera is the first right-handed slugger to commit to the competition. The Marlins third baseman has 17 homers and has made it clear that he enjoys the Home Run Derby and is thankful to get a chance to compete for the second time. Cabrera competed in the Home Run Derby at Pittsburgh in 2006, when he hit 15 and finished third in the competition won by Howard.

All-Star Game Coverage

"When I went to my first two All-Star Games, they [didn't ask me] to do it," Cabrera said. "I am taking the same approach: see the ball and hit home runs."

Marlins manager Fredi Gonzalez will pitch to Cabrera at the Derby. Gonzalez recently was added to the National League coaching staff by All-Star manager Tony La Russa of the Cardinals.

"Miguel is disciplined, and he is darn good," Gonzalez said. "Miguel is a hitter. He has power. He's not one of those swing-and-miss guys."

The 78th Major League Baseball All-Star Game will be televised nationally by FOX Sports, in Canada by Rogers Sportsnet and Sportsnet HD and televised around the world by Major League Baseball International, with pregame ceremonies beginning at 8 p.m. ET. ESPN Radio will provide exclusive national radio coverage, while MLB.com will provide extensive online coverage. XM will provide satellite radio play-by-play coverage of the XM All-Star Futures Game.

Jim Molony is a writer for MLB.com. MLB.com reporters Barry Bloom and Joe Frisaro contributed to this report, which was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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