Cal baseball’s slugger bounced in 1st round of College Home Run Derby

Isabella Ko/Staff

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While it wasn’t quite the showing he would have wanted to put on, Saturday night at TD Ameritrade Park Omaha served as Quentin Selma’s introduction to the national spotlight.

Cal baseball’s All-Conference third baseman was an early exit in the 2019 College Home Run Derby — he was eliminated in the first round of the annual contest — but he made history as the first Bear to ever participate in the competition.

The derby, which had six contestants, was broken up into three rounds. The top four participants in the first round advanced to the second round, and the top two in the second round advanced to the finals.

Selma, who had four minutes to hit as many homers as possible, got off to a slow start, only racking up three home runs by the halfway mark. The slugger hit his groove late, hitting five home runs after taking a timeout at the 2:07 mark and ending with eight total.

After time expired, Selma had an opportunity to hit the moneyball, worth two home runs, but he couldn’t send it over the fence. That missed moneyball proved to be the difference between advancing and being eliminated — Kentucky’s T.J. Collett ended the first round in fourth place with nine home runs, just cracking the second round.

Selma, who hit second among the six in the first round, offered advice to his fellow contestants after his turn, noting they should “hit bombs and pull it.”

Throwing to Selma was family friend Darin Ghimenti, who coaches alongside Selma’s father, Bart, at Fresno City College.

Northern Kentucky’s Griffin Doersching won the derby, smacking 20 home runs in the final round to defeat Mississippi’s Tyler Keenan.

Selma will return to Southern California, where he will continue playing summer ball for the Santa Barbara Foresters in the California Collegiate League. In eight games, Selma is hitting .194 with no extra base hits.

Justice delos Santos is the assistant sports editor. Contact Justice delos Santos at [email protected]. Follow him on Twitter @justdelossantos.