The Hall of Famer has won the past two editions, four of the past six, six of the past eight, and eight of the past 12.
On Sunday, Baffert sends out three of the five 2-year-olds in the $100,000 Bob Hope at 7 furlongs.
Leading off is 4-5 morning-line favorite Nysos, a $550,000 purchase who romped by 10 ½ lengths in his debut on Oct. 21 at Santa Anita.
Wine Me Up is 5-1 coming into the race after tiring in the 1 1/16-mile Breeders’ Cup Juvenile (G1) on Nov. 4. A quick return could be a good sign at a decent price for this $300,000 purchase
Mission Beach, a Curlin colt who sold for $400,000, is 6-1. He won his debut at Del Mar over the summer and was a tiring fifth in the 7-furlong Hopeful (G1) at Saratoga in September after holding leading in the stretch.
Looking to top Baffert’s trio are Stronghold and Tejon Pass.
Stronghold, trained by Phil D’Amato, won at a mile at Churchill Downs in his second outing on Oct. 1. The son of Ghostzapper is the 3-1 second choice.
Tejon Pass, trained by Peter Miller, won in his second start at Santa Anita on Sept. 30 in front-running fashion. He’s the son of 2018 Triple Crown winner Justify and is listed at 5-1.
Post time for the Bob Hope is 7 p.m. ET.
The picks: 1 Wine Me Up 2 Tejon Pass 3 Nysos
1. Tejon Pass (Mike Smith, Peter Miller), 5-1
2. Mission Beach (Juan Hernandez, Bob Baffert), 6-1
3. Wine Me Up (Ramon Vazquez, Bob Baffert), 6-1
4. Stronghold (Antonio Fresu, Phil D’Amato), 3-1
5. Nysos (Flavien Prat, Bob Baffert), 4-5
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