SAN DIEGO — For Jeff Seager of Kannapolis, North Carolina, his first big league call-up was a long time coming.
The father of Dodgers shortstop Corey Seager will be on the mound tonight with the unique goal of trying to allow as many home runs as possible to his son at the Home Run Derby. The 56-year-old right hander has never been scored upon in a professional game, but he believes he has a strategy for success (or, in his case, failure).
“I’m going to go about it like I’m in the backyard,” Seager said. “I’m hoping it’s the same.”
Derby participants are allowed to choose their own pitcher, and Jeff Seager says he was “honored” to get the call from his son last week. Corey may have unleashed a beast. He said earlier Monday that his father jokingly mentioned something to a co-worker about throwing a knuckleball and attempting a comeback.
This is the second All-Star Game Jeff has attended. When Corey’s older brother, Kyle, made the American League All-Star team in 2014, the Seagers flew to Minneapolis for the occasion.
Seager is already outpacing his older brother’s production. At 22, he leads the Dodgers in batting average (.297), doubles (22), triples (3), home runs (17), slugging percentage (.521) and runs scored (60). He is a midseason favorite to win the National League Rookie of the Year award.
Jeff Seager said he’s not surprised by any of it.
“I know how had the kid works and everything,” he said. “I wouldn’t put it past him that he would be able to accomplish it, but there’s still a lot of things that have to go right. My wife and I are very, very happy for him.”