Fans & Players Select MLB All-Star Game Rosters
The rosters have been announced for this year’s MLB All-Star Game, on deck to take place Tuesday, July 15, in Minneapolis at Target Field, home of the Minnesota Twins. Because the game is being held in an American League park, the designated hitter will be used, and AL fans selected home run leader Nelson Cruz of the Baltimore Orioles to start at the position next week.
Cruz sits perfectly at the epicenter of so much that’s happening in baseball right now: suspended last season after testing positive for performance-enhancing drugs (PEDs), he signed a cheaper-than-expected free agent deal with the O’s and has supplied a power surge that’s lifted the team into first place in the topsy-turvy AL East.
PEDs remain a hot-button issue in baseball, and coincidentally offense has been down in a big way across both leagues all season. It’ll take big performances from Cruz and his peers in both dugouts to overcome the lights-out pitching that’ll be taking the mound all night in Minnesota. Last year’s game saw the AL reclaim victory after a three-year National League winning streak, and home field advantage earned in the 2013 ASG proved important to the eventual World Series winning Boston Red Sox.
Notable players in this year’s Midsummer Classic include Derek Jeter of the Yankees, whose last appearance before retirement will be starting at shortstop thanks to the fan vote, and Blue Jays outfielder Jose “Joey Bats” Bautista, who led all players in votes and led the Blue Jays to bombs-away first half that has them in the AL East and Wild Card races.
For the National League, the outfield trio of Andrew McCutchen, Carlos Gomez, and Yasiel Puig all earned their first starting nods from the fans while Rockies shortstop Troy Tulowitzki garnered the most votes among Senior Circuit representatives. Fans don’t pick the pitchers – players and managers do – but expect to see deep, dominant bullpens at the disposal of both leagues in an effort to shut down some of the fastest and most powerful hitters the game has ever seen. It should be another great night of the National Pastime to shine. Play ball!
MLB All-Star Game Tickets
2014 American League All-Stars
|Jose Abreu||1B||White Sox|
|Edwin Encarnacion||DH||Blue Jays|
|Jose Bautista||OF||Blue Jays||X|
|Mark Buehrle||SP||Blue Jays|
|Jon Lester||SP||Red Sox|
|Alexei Ramirez||SS||White Sox|
2014 National League All-Stars
|Jeff Samardzija||SP||Cubs / A’s|
MLB.com Final Vote Candidates
Some of this season’s notable snubs have a final chance to be selected by the fans via the Final Vote at MLB.com. In the American League, White Sox pitching phenom Chris Sale is currently the front runner over other starting pitchers in the running: Dallas Keuchel (Astros), Corey Kluber (Indians), Rich Porcello (Tigers), and Garrett Richards (Angels). For the Senior Circuit, resurgent first baseman Justin Morneau of the Rockies leads the voting over Casey McGehee (Marlins), Anthony Rendon (Nationals), Anthony Rizzo (Cubs), and Justin Upton (Braves). Voting closes at 4p on Thursday, so make sure your vote is counted by the deadline!