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CLEVELAND, OHIO - JULY 08: Pete Alonso of the New York Mets poses with the trophy after winning the T-Mobile Home Run Derby at Progressive Field on July 08, 2019 in Cleveland, Ohio. (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)
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Mets’ Pete Alonso to defend Home Run Derby crown

(Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)

Pete Alonso is “back” and ready to defend his Home Run Derby crown.

The New York Mets first baseman announced via Instagram on Wednesday that he’s headed to Denver to participate in the Derby, which he won in 2019.

“I had so much fun during the first one, so I was like, ‘You know what? Let’s do it again,’” Alonso said on Wednesday. “I just had a blast.”

Alonso joins Los Angeles Angels two-way sensation Shohei Ohtani, who announced his participation in the Derby last week. The two are the only commitments thus far for the July 12 event.

With the Derby canceled in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Alonso will be the top seed despite having hit just 11 home runs this season, good enough for 61st among all MLB players.

Alonso also has a chance to string together back-to-back wins for the first time since Yoenis Céspedes did so in 2013 and 2014.

“I’d love to do it again,” Alonso said, “and I’d love to win it again.”

Interestingly, Ken Griffey Jr. would win the 1998 Derby at Coors Field for his second event victory, and the Hall of Famer would go on to win it again in 1999 at Fenway Park to become the first Major Leaguer to win it in back-to-back seasons.

Prince Fielder (2009 and 2012) is the only other player to win the Derby at least twice.