August 15, 2022

Justin Verlander, Jordan Alvarez, Kyle Tucker, Framber Valdez to All-Star Game

Justin Verlander, Jordan Alvarez, Kyle Tucker, Framber Valdez to All-Star Game

Auckland – Starting with the second base Jose Altove Manager Dusty Baker will be joined by some familiar MLS faces in the All-Star Game on July 19, where four Astros are named to the reserve team.

Verlander, 39, leads the MLS with 11 wins, and is followed by only 2.00 ERA Shane McClanahan of Tampa Bay (1.73 ERA). Verlander had a job in his comeback season after missing out on the whole of 2021 while recovering from Tommy John surgery, throwing at least seven innings in eight of his 16 starts and scoring 12 Quality Begins.

“It means a lot,” Verlander said. “A lot of things in the first half put a few things into perspective, kind of remembering all the hard work that went on for me here, to get me back here. To be known by my colleagues and to be chosen, it’s a great honor.”

Perhaps no All-Star was more certain than Alvarez, who has positioned himself as an early candidate for the best player. Sunday came in ahead of the Majors in OPS (1.058), slowdown (.653) and at-bats per home round (10.31). Alvarez was a finalist to start with the designated hitter, but was eventually defeated, 52% to 48%, by Angels Shuhei Ohtani.

“It is a great honor for him, such a young player, to be second to Shuhei,” Baker said after announcing the start of the All-Star Game on Friday.

“I am so happy for [Alvarez and Valdez]Tucker said. They definitely won it. They’ve had extraordinary years and have worked their whole lives for it.”

After his breakout season in 2021, Tucker puts 2022 solid, down .259/.351/.478 with 16 home runs entering play on Sunday. Tucker’s 58 RBIs are second only to Aaron Judge (65) among AL players, and his 14 steals tied him for fifth in the league. He’s also been a key defender for Houston, according to Fangraphs, with 10 defensive rounds saved this season with Tampa Bay’s Brett Phillips scoring more than one player.

Valdez, who has emerged as one of baseball’s best players, concluded that the Astros quintet are headed to Los Angeles. Valdez has gone 8-4 with a 2.64 ERA in 17 starts this season, and is currently collecting 14 straight starts. He couldn’t help but smile as he discussed the composition of the first All-Star Team.

“I worked really hard for this,” Valdez said via translator Jenloye Herrera. “I’ve been trying to work tirelessly for this, trying to focus on the game a lot more, and just trying to get good walks every time I get out there, so today I can be an All-Star.”

Houston’s All-Star Five will be in good company, with Baker and his crew at the helm of the AL team at Dodger Stadium. Baker said it is a special opportunity to manage his players as well as some of the best players in the league at this prestigious event.

“I was looking at that list, and Whew, they have some bad boys on that list,” Baker said. “I feel it is an honor to manage, and we are on the same side, so [just] for one day.”