BY: Richard W. Humphrey
Seven Rangers were named to the 2012 American League All-Star team announced Sunday afternoon. Josh Hamilton, Adrian Beltre and Mike Napoli were elected by vote of the fans. Starting pitcher Matt Harrison, tied for the league lead in wins with 11, and closer Joe Nathan, who has converted 18 of 19 save opportunities, are part of the American League’s pitching staff. Reserve position players include second baseman Ian Kinsler and shortstop Elvis Andrus.
Hamilton led all vote getters with more than 11 million votes. This will be his fifth All-Star appearance. Beltre is an All-Star for the third time in his career and will be starting at third base for the second consecutve year. Napoli is a first time All-Star. Kinsler made the All-Star team for the third time in his career, while this is the second season for Andrus to be named to the team.
The American League manager is Ranger manager Ron Washington by virtue of the Rangers winning the American League championship last year. His National League counterpart is Tony La Russa, who managed last year’s National League representative in the World Series – the Cardinals – but is not currently managing a Major League team. This is the first time in history that an All-Star manager is not currently a manager in the Major Leagues.
This is the third consecutive year for the Rangers to send at least two pitchers to the All-Star game. Nathan is an All-Star for the fifth time, while Harrison is a first time All-Star. He is tied with David Price for the league lead in wins. Price also made the team. Seven All-Stars is the most ever for the Rangers in a season, but that number could expand to eight. There are five nominees for the 34th roster spot, which will be voted in by fans. All five candidates are pitchers, including Yu Darvish.
This will be the 83rd All-Star game and the third played in Kansas City. It was previously played in Kansas City in 1960 and 1973. The FOX network will televise the game.
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