Dirty Birds give fans reason to smile with first ever Home Run Derby

By Matthew Young, RealWV

CHARLESTON, W.Va. – The Charleston Dirty Birds got the fun started early on Saturday, as seven players competed in the team’s inaugural Home Run Derby at GoMart Ballpark. And while the season doesn’t officially begin until Thursday night when the Dirty Birds welcome the Staten Island Ferryhawks, nearly 1,400 fans came out to root, root, root for the home team. 

(L-R) Dawel Lugo, Dariel Gomez, Jose Bermudez, Jacob Bosiokovic, Eddie Butler, Keon Barton, and Bobby Bradley prepare to compete in the innagural Dirty Birds Home Run Derby, April 20. Photo by Matthew Young, RealWV.

It was a back-and-forth slugfest, which saw the Dirty Birds’ heavy hitters send multiple balls into the parking lot across Morris Street, and dozens of excited fans home with a hard hit souvenir. 

Bobby Bradley, Eddie Butler, Jacob Bosiokovic, Jose Bermudez, and Dawel Lugo all swung for the fences, as did the newly signed Keon Barton – a man notorious for hitting what team-owner Andy Shea referred to as a “700 foot home run” against the Birds several years ago. But when the home plate dust settled, just as it is in the movies, there could be only one. 

At the end of the night, and on the strength of 22 home runs… yes, you read that right, 22 home runs, it was first baseman Dariel Gomez who raised the obnoxiously-large trophy high above his head, and rightfully proclaimed himself Charleston Dirty Birds 2024 Home Run Derby Champion. 

The Dirty Birds begin their season on Thursday, with a four-game home series against the Staten Island Ferry Hawks. Thursday’s home opener begins at 6:35 p.m. Single game tickets and multi-game packages are available at dirtybirdsbaseball.com

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