All-star game: a place of choice for Vladimir Guerrero

All-star match: A top spot for Vladimir Guerrero

UPGRADE DAY

Toronto Blue Jays slugger Vladimir Guerrero Jr. will be No. 4 in the American League offensive roster at the Major League Baseball All-Star Game on Tuesday at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles.< /p>

The one with 20 home runs and 57 RBIs this season will thus find himself in a place traditionally reserved for the formation's favorite power hitter. The other Jays starter, receiver Alejandro Kirk, will serve as the ninth batter.

Shohei Ohtani, Aaron Judge and Rafael Devers, respectively of the Los Angeles Angels, New York Yankees and Boston Red Sox, will precede Guerrero Jr. at the plate, while Giancarlo Stanton (Yankees), Byron Buxton (Minnesota Twins) , Tim Anderson (Chicago White Sox) and Andres Gimenez (Cleveland Guardians) will start in order, between the two representatives of the only Canadian team on the circuit.

To return to Ohtani, the Swiss army knife of the California formation could have had the honor not only of starting the game at bat, but also that of starting it on the mound, as a pitcher, but he would have refused this offer from the manager Houston Astros Dusty Baker.

“We considered him a candidate, but what we learned from his camp is that it is better that he does not start,” Baker briefly mentioned, whose remarks were picked up by Sportsnet. Then, when asked if Ohtani would step on the mound later in the match, he simply replied, “There are certain questions that they have to ask.”

It's Tampa Bay Rays pitcher Shane McClanahan will start the game at the mound. The second-year gunner has an excellent 10-3 record, he who also preserved a 1.71 ERA since the start of the season, the best in all major league baseball.

“To tell you the truth, I've never seen him pitch,” said Baker, who therefore does not recall seeing McClanahan in action during the 2020 All-American Championship Series, when the Rays and the Astros were opposed. Defending the manager, McClanahan had been unimpressive at the time, giving up three runs in one and two-thirds innings of work.

Kershaw for Los Angeles fans

To the delight of the crowd present at Dodger Stadium, Dodgers left-handed pitcher Clayton Kershaw will act as the National's starter.

“Since we are in Los Angeles, at the home of the Dodgers, you talk about the different options and the name of Clayton always came back to the heart of the discussion to start this game”, affirmed the manager of the National for this annual classic, Brian Snitker , Atlanta Braves.

Kershaw will thus become only the 13th pitcher in history to start an all-star game at his usual home. The last had been Max Scherzer, in 2018, when he played for the Washington Nationals. Steve Rogers had also accomplished this feat of arms for the Expos, in 1982, in Montreal.

To return to Kershaw, the one who will be in his ninth all-star game, in addition to having put the handing over three Cy-Young trophies, awarded annually to the best pitcher in each league, is enjoying another season as only he knows the secret. The 34-year-old went 7-2 with a 2.13 ERA.

“His reputation and everything he means to baseball and the Dodgers makes he's the ideal starter,” added Snitker.

Offensively, the “1-2 punch” will consist of Ronald Acuna Jr. (Atlanta Braves) and Mookie Betts (Los Angeles Dodgers). The core of the offensive lineup will be made up in order of Manny Machado (San Diego Padres), Paul Goldschmidt (St. Louis Cardinals) and Trea Turner (Dodgers). Willson and William Contreras of the Chicago Cubs and Braves respectively, Joc Pederson (San Francisco Giants) and Jeff McNeil (New York Mets) will complete the role.