The rosters for the 2017 All-Star Game in Miami were announced on Sunday, and the Red Sox will have three representatives on the team.
The most notable and obvious All Star that will be wearing a Red Sox jersey is Chris Sale. While it hasn’t been announced yet, it stands to reason that he is the favorite to start the game for the American League as long as he’s available to pitch that day. The southpaw has been incredible in his first season in Boston, striking out a league-leading 166 batters in 120 2⁄3 innings while walking only 22. Over his first 17 starts, Sale has pitched to a 2.61 ERA to go with a 1.98 FIP and a 1.83 DRA. There was no doubt he’d make the team, but it was still cool to see his presence announced on ESPN. This is the sixth time he’s made the All-Star team, with all of his appearances coming in consecutive years.
While Sale has been the best player on the Red Sox this year, he wasn’t the only no-brainer to make the team. Joining him on the American League pitching staff will be Craig Kimbrel. If there was a way to recognize the league’s best reliever like starting the game honors the first half’s best starter, Kimbrel would get it. The righty has a 1.01 ERA on the season with a 1.55 DRA and a 0.40 FIP. He’s been incredible in all areas of pitching, but what’s particularly impressive is that he has struck out 64 of the 126 batters he’s faced. For those who struggle with quick math, that’s a rate of more than 50 percent. This will be his sixth career All-Star appearance and his second as a member of the Red Sox.
The two pitchers were the obvious All-Star candidates, but they won’t be the only players representing Boston in Miami. The one position player who will be going from Boston to Miami is Mookie Betts. The runner-up in last year’s MVP voting, Betts has had something of a down year this season, at least relative to expectations. He has still been very good, though, and showed earlier on Sunday that he is still a great player. After that two home run game, Betts is hitting .286/.375/.509. Additionally, he is still providing elite defense and some of the best baserunning in the league. The All-Star Game wouldn’t have really been complete without Betts, so it was nice to see him on the roster for the second time in his career and the second consecutive season.
There is one notable snub from the roster on the Red Sox, and that is Xander Bogaerts. Boston’s shortstop has been incredible at the plate this season, showing off his tremendous ability to turn balls in play into hits and a strong two-strike approach en route to a .308/.357/.438 line. Unfortunately for him, this is an extremely strong class of American League shortstops. There is still a chance for him to make the roster, of course, either due to injury or through the Final Vote. As of this writing, the players eligible for the Final Vote have not been announced yet, but we’ll keep you updated as to whether or not Bogaerts will be a part of it.
UPDATE: Bogaerts is indeed part of the Final Five vote for the American League. Vote for Xander.