PITTSBURGH (AP) — Reigning NL MVP Christian Yelich of the Milwaukee Brewers has pulled out of Monday’s All-Star Home Run Derby with a back injury and will be replaced by Oakland Athletics slugger Matt Chapman.
Major League Baseball announced Sunday that Yelich would sit out the Derby. Yelich leads the majors with 31 home runs but has dealt with back issues at times throughout the first half. Yelich had been practicing for the showcase and broke a window on a houseboat outside PNC Park earlier this week while preparing.
Yelich was held out of Milwaukee’s lineup Sunday at Pittsburgh for its final game before the All-Star break. Manager Craig Counsell said the absence wasn’t due to injury, but because the team “felt we were at the red line with him” from a workload standpoint.
Yelich was also voted a starter for Tuesday’s All-Star Game. It’s unclear if he’ll play.
Chapman will fill-in for the Derby at Cleveland’s Progressive Stadium. He was informed Sunday morning and immediately called his father, Jim Chapman, to ask if he would be his pitcher. Chapman will be a first-time All-Star after hitting 21 homers and an AL-leading 46 extra-base hits.
Brewers relief pitcher Josh Hader is also skipping the All-Star Game with a back injury.