All-Stars bigger in Texas
Posted: Monday, July 2, 2012 7:00 pm
By BEN WALKER
AP Baseball Writer
NEW YORK (AP) — Josh Hamilton is set to lead a Texas parade to the All-Star game. Now, fans will decide if Chipper Jones gets one final appearance or whether it’s time for teen sensation Bryce Harper.
Hamilton drew a record total of more than 11 million votes, and the slugger was among seven Rangers chosen Sunday as All-Stars. A trio of San Francisco Giants rallied in the last week to claim spots, while three Yankees also made the starting lineup.
“I don’t think the Texas Rangers have to apologize because we’ve got good players,” AL manager Ron Washington of Texas said. “I certainly didn’t pick my guys being selfish, I picked them very deserving of being All-Stars, bottom line.”
Washington fastballer Stephen Strasburg and Mets knuckleballer R.A. Dickey were two of the 66 players chosen by fans, managers and big leaguers for the showcase July 10 in Kansas City. So was 20-year-old Angels rookie outfielder Mike Trout, who leads the AL in hitting at .339 and drew more than 800,000 write-in votes.
Few of the races for starting spots were close and there seemed to be little complaining about the fans’ choices. OK, sure, David Wright could’ve gotten the nod over Pablo Sandoval.
But there certainly will be campaigning this week when it comes to Jones and Harper after they were left off — for now, anyway.
The NL and AL each have one spot left, with fans voting online through Thursday to select one of five candidates in both leagues. Jones and Harper are two of the NL possibilities.
At 40, Jones is a seven-time All-Star and plans to retire after this season. Banged up, the Atlanta third baseman has managed to hit near .300.
Published in The Messenger 7.2.12