TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Florida State freshman DJ Stewart (Yulee, Fla.) will be one of eight student-athletes competing in the 2013 TD Ameritrade College Home Run Derby contest as announced Wednesday afternoon.
The home run derby will be held on Wednesday, July 3 at 8:30 p.m. ET inside TD Ameritrade Park in Omaha, Neb., home of the NCAA College World Series. The fourth-annual event will air nationally on ESPN at 8 p.m. ET on Thursday, July 4. This year’s roster will include power hitters selected from a pool of eligible players that have ranked among the nation’s home run leaders during the 2013 college baseball season.
Stewart closed out his first year at Florida State as the team leader in average (.364), hits (82), doubles (25), slugging percentage (.560), on-base percentage (.469) and stolen bases (8), while ranking third with five home runs. He finished the season ranked in the top 10 in the ACC in six offensive categories including doubles (3rd), batting average (4th), on-base percentage (5th), RBI (7th), slugging percentage (8th) and hits (9th).
Following the completion of the regular season, the Yulee, Fla., native earned one of five spots as an outfielder on the All-ACC second team. Just a week later, Stewart's hot bat earned him a place on the ACC All-Tournament team after hitting .667 with a double, triple and three runs scored. At season’s end, Stewart was recognized as a Freshmen All-American by Louisville Slugger/Collegiate Baseball and the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association.
Stewart finished the season as one of the hottest hitters in the nation hitting .564 (22-for-39) with four doubles, one triple, one home run, eight RBI and 11 runs scored. He recorded multiple hits in nine of those games including three three-hit games. During that span, Stewart reached base in 35 of his 49 plate appearances.
The freshman outfielder also led the team with 26 multi-hit games and was the only Seminole to record five or more RBI in a game in 2013. Stewart tallied a career-high six RBI in an 11-3 victory over Georgia Tech. His first career home run came in dramatic fashion as he hit a two-run walk-off blast in the 10th inning of the series finale against Rhode Island to lead the Seminoles to a series sweep. Stewart closed out the season riding a career-high 17-game hitting streak.
Stewart, who was drafted in the 28th round of the 2012 MLB First Year Player Draft by the New York Yankees, is currently playing this summer in the Cape Cod League with the Yarmouth-Dennis Red Sox.
The TD Ameritrade College Home Run Derby includes three rounds of play: Round 1 featuring all contestants, Round 2 featuring the top four after Round 1 and Round 3 featuring the top two after Round 2. In each round, contestants will be challenged to hit as many home runs as they can before logging 10 "outs," or hits that do not result in a home run. Balls reaching the warning track will not count as an "out," giving players another opportunity at bat. Additionally, following the 10th and final out of each "at bat," contestants will have an opportunity to hit a home run with the `Bonus Ball.' If successful, the special ball will tack two additional home runs onto the contestant's total score.
The rest of the field for the home run derby contest will be announced by Monday, July 1.
Tickets are $8 for children, $12 for adults or $35 for a `Family Four-Pack' and may be purchased in-person from the CenturyLink Center arena box offices, by calling Ticketmaster at 800-745-3000, or online at www.collegehomerunderby.com. Handling fees will apply to those tickets purchased over the phone or online.
The Omaha World-Herald's 29th annual Independence Day fireworks display, presented by J&M Displays, will follow the derby.
Past winners of College Home Run Derby
2010 – Paul Hoilman, East Tennessee State
2011 – Daniel Aldrich, College of Charleston
2012 – Aaron Judge, Fresno State