Shohei Ohtani was selected as both a pitcher and a hitter in the All-Star Game’s near century-old history.
Two-way sensation Ohtani from the Los Angeles Angels was one of the American League starting pitchers selected Sunday at Denver’s Coors Field for the July 13 showcase. Ohtani, the leading majors player in home runs, was already elected by fans as the AL’s designated batter.
Boston sent five All-Stars, making it the city with the most since 2009. J.D. Martinez, Nathan Eovaldi, the starting pitcher, and Matt Barnes, the reliever were selected to join a pair: Rafael Devers and shortstop Xander Bogaerts.
Each city has four All-Stars, with Toronto and Houston having four.
Three days after the announcement of fan-elected starters, Ohtani received 121 votes from players, managers, and coaches.
“The guy is going to participate at Home Run Derby, pitch the game and hit the game. After speaking with Kevin Cash, the Tampa Bay AL skipper, Joe Maddon explained that this doesn’t happen often. “So this is it… even a non-baseball fan can latch onto this and become intrigued.”
By 1933, the All-Star Game began. Babe Ruth was well past his pitching days. Ruth only made one appearance in the pitching booth that season, his last one on the last day. In 1919, he last pitched regularly.
Ohtani’s batting average is.278. He has 31 home runs and 67 RBIs. He is now 3-1 in 12 starts and has a 3.60 ERA. There have been 83 strikeouts during 60 innings.
Ohtani was not available for media interviews by the Angels on Sunday. Major League Baseball has not opened its clubhouses to reporters since the outbreak of the pandemic.
Ohtani was quoted by the team, saying: “It is my first time so I want to enjoy every moment.” The Home Run Derby is also on the horizon, so I look forward to enjoying it all and taking in everything.
He was joined by Gerrit Cole, a fellow AL starter pitcher from the New York Yankees (272 votes), Lance Lynn (199) and Carlos Rodon (192) from the Chicago White Sox.
Shane Bieber (189) from Cleveland was also elected, but he is injured and will miss the game. Mike Trout, Angels outfielder, was elected by fans as a starter, and Kyle Schwarber (Washington outfielder) were picked as a reserve.
Jacob deGrom, a Mets ace with a historic low ERA (0.95), led NL starting pitchers in 321 votes. He was followed by San Francisco’s Kevin Gausman (210) and Milwaukee’s Corbin Burnes (153) while Brandon Woodruff (146) and San Diego’s Yu Darvish (105)
DeGrom stated, “I’m supposed throw Sunday, so I don’t believe it’s smart for me to pitch in the All-Star Game.” “I have been feeling a bit tired this first half, and I missed some starts that I regret not having missed. So it doesn’t make sense for me to throw it in.
The Yankees’ struggling Aroldischapman (160), Chicago’s Liam Hendriks (159), and Barnes (117), are the AL relievers. Chicago’s Craig Kimbrel (208), Milwaukee’s Josh Hader (191), and San Diego’s Mark Melancon (107) are all in the NL bullpen.
Tampa Bay catcher Mike Zunino, along with Oakland’s first baseman Matt Olson and Houston’s second baseman Jose Altuve, was elected an AL reserve. Shortstop Carlos Correa, Cleveland thirdbaseman Jose Ramirez, and outfielders Cedric Mullinas of Baltimore, Michael Brantley from the Astros, and Adolis Garcia, of Texas, were also elected.
Major League Baseball picked five pitchers to participate in the picks. They included Eovaldi and Kyle Gibson from Texas, Yusei Kikuchi of Seattle, and Ryan Pressly from Houston. Also, Bo Bichette, Toronto shortstop, and Joey Gallo, Angels’ first baseman, and Nelson Cruz, Minnesota’s DH Nelson Cruz.
J.T., Philadelphia catcher Realmuto was selected as a reserve with the Dodgers’ first baseman Max Muncy and San Diego’s second baseman Jake Cronenworth. Washington shortstop Trea Turner, Cubs thirdbaseman Kris Bryant, Cubs shortstop Trea Turner, Cubs shortstop Trea Turn, Cubs third baseman Kris Bryant and Mookie Betts, Los Angeles outfielder, and Bryan Reynolds, Pittsburgh outfielder.
MLB has added pitchers German Marquez from the host Rockies to their lineup along with St. Louis’ Alex Reyes and Philadelphia’s Trevor Rogers, as well as Atlanta second baseman Ozzie Albies and San Francisco shortstop Brandon Crawford. Also, Arizona infielder Eduardo Escobar and Juan Soto, Washington outfielder Juan Soto, and Dodgers outfielder Chris Taylor.
Garcia and Rogers are both rookies in 34 first-time All-Stars. Vladimir Guerrero Jr., Toronto’s first baseman, is the youngest player, at 22 and 3 1/2 months. He trails San Diego shortstop Fernando Tatis Jr., who is 22 and 6 months, and Juan Soto, who are 22 and 8 months respectively.
Seven players were born in the Dominican Republic, five from Venezuela and three each from Japan and Cuba.