As expected, three teams dominated the All Star roster that was announced on Sunday, just as they have the regular season so far. The Boston Red Sox, Cleveland Indians, and Houston Astros put five players each on the American League team.
The National League had a little more parity. The Atlanta Braves led the division with four players, but the Colorado Rockies, Washington Nationals, Chicago Cubs, and Milwaukee Brewers each have three players going to the Midsummer Classic.
The game is set for July 17 at Washington’s Nationals Park. Odds for the game have not yet been released, but the American League has dominated past contests. Last year, the National League was a -115 favorite to win the game, but the -105 American League took the contest with a 2-1 victory. It was the fifth consecutive AL win.
Altuve, Betts Lead Voting
Two American League players received the most votes from fans, and were two of three that got more than 4 million votes. Houston Astros second baseman Jose Altuve was the leading vote getter with 4.8 million votes. Boston outfielder Mookie Betts was second with 4.2 million. Atlanta Braves first baseman Freddie Freeman got just over 4 million.
Though the Astros placed five players on the squad, Altuve is the only starter of the field players. Outfielder George Springer and third baseman Alex Bregman will be reserves. Pitchers Gerrit Cole and Justin Verlander were also named, but Manager A.J. Hinch of the defending World Series Champion Astros hasnít named his starter yet.
Betts is one of two starters for the AL representing the Red Sox. Designated hitter J.D. Martinez is the other. First baseman Mitch Moreland will be a reserve. The team also had two pitchers named, Craig Kimbrel and Chris Sale.
The Indians were the other team that was well represented, but only third baseman Jose Ramirez will start. Shortstop Francisco Lindor and outfielder Michael Brantley are reserves. Pitchers Corey Kluber and Trevor Bauer were named to the team.
Cubs Have Two Starters
Though Freeman was the leading vote getter in the National League, the Chicago Cubs are the only team to have two players starting. Catcher Willson Contreras and second baseman Javier Baez were voted to the starting team. Pitcher Jon Lester was also named to the rotation by NL All Star manager Dave Roberts.
Three players from the Milwaukee Brewers were named. The Brewers have surprised baseball with the best record in the NL. They were the third pick by oddsmakers to win the NL Central at 7/1, and a 30/1 selection to win the World Series. They were rewarded with their success at the halfway point of the season by Roberts by having pitcher Josh Hader, and outfielders Lorenzo Cain and Christian Yelich named to the team.
The Washington Nationals also got three players despite being in third place in the NL East. Outfielder Bryce Harper was voted by fans, and Roberts named pitchers Max Scherzer and Sean Doolittle to the rotation.