Cubs outfielder Kyle Schwarber finishes second in the MLB Home Run Derby

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WASHINGTON, DC - JULY 16: Kyle Schwarber of the Chicago Cubs and National League competes in the first round during the T-Mobile Home Run Derby at Nationals Park on July 16, 2018 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images)

WASHINGTON D.C. – Since making his debut in Major League Baseball in 2015, many envisioned the Cubs’ young slugger participating in this event.

Long and towering home runs are part of Kyle Schwarber’s repertoire during his first four seasons, with a few of them as major moments in a memorable era for the franchise. Taking part in a showcase of this power only seemed a formality for the outfielder – and he finally got the chance in 2018.

He certainly took advantage of it on a warm night in Washington, it wasn’t enough to beat the hometown favorite

Nationals outfielder Bryce Harper beat out Schwarber 19-18 in the final round of the MLB Home Run Derby thanks to a late push in his final at-bats of the night. The Cubs’ outfielder came just short of becoming the first player in the franchise to win the competition since Sammy Sosa in 2000.

It was a fight for Schwarber to advance through each round, starting with a close call against Bregman in the first round. After slugging 16 dingers, the Astros’ player got to 15 in the final seconds and sent one deep to left field. But it bounced off the wall and stayed out of the stands to keep Schwarber alive in the competition.

The semifinal required Schwarber to play some catch-up after Hoskins, who upset top seed Jesus Aguilar in the first round, hit 20 homers to start off. After a slow start, however, Schwarber caught up and hit 5 homers in the final 30 seconds to best Hoskins by one.

In the final, Schwarber came in just under his total from the semifinals with 18 homers and Harper started off his round slowly, but rallied late and got the tying homer with just a few seconds left. With a 30 second bonus, Harper hit the derby-winning homer as a great night by Schwarber fell just short of a title.

His teammate Javier Baez couldn’t get out of the first round of the competition as he was beaten by the Dodgers’ Max Muncy 17-16 in the first round.

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