For next week’s All-Star game, the Arizona Diamondbacks had four players selected to the National League squad.
Perform well and rewards will follow. That’s what essentially happened to third baseman Jake Lamb, first baseman Paul Goldschmidt and pitchers Zack Greinke and Robbie Ray of the Arizona Diamondbacks. These four players were selected to help represent the National League in the 2017 All-Star game next week in Miami, and all have made significant contributions to the Diamondbacks’ surge atop of the NL West Division.
When this selection filtered through the organization, manager Torey Lovullo summoned his entire squad before Sunday’s home game with the Colorado Rockies in the clubhouse, and with general manager Mike Hazen and assistant G. M. Jared Porter at his side, Luvollo make the announcement.
While four were selected, Lovullo told Venom Strikes after Sunday’s game that “I was bursting, wanted to tell everyone but couldn’t do that.” Lovullo said he informed the team around 9:30 Sunday morning, but kept the news from the media during his daily pre-game session with reporters Sunday morning.
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Instead, the team knew by mid-morning and following the Diamondbacks 4-3, walk-off victory over the Rockies Sunday, Lovullo identified the four Arizona players selected for the mid-summer classic to the media after his post-game remarks.
For Goldschmidt, this is his fifth All-Star selection and the fourth for Greinke. Each Ray and Lamb will make their initial appearance in an All-Star game.
Among Lamb and Goldschmidt, neither will start, but Greinke and Ray may have a reasonable to start the game. Then again, Max Scherzer of the Washington Nationals, Alex Wood of the Los Angeles Dodgers and the Dodgers’ Clayton Kershaw all have equal standing. The choice who ultimately starts lays with NL manager John Maddon of the defending World Series champion Chicago Cubs.
For now, Lovullo identified Lamb, Goldschmidt, Ray and Greinke as representative of the Arizona franchise, but told Venom Strikes his team contends each game with several worthy candidates.
"“This is very exciting news for us,” he said. “I know we have four going, but Chris Owings, Fernando Rodney and Archie Bradley all deserve consideration. I’m really proud of everyone. Look, we have 50 wins and you don’t do that with average players. We have very good players and the league recognized that.”"
Realistically, Lovullo pointed out, numbers of All-Star selections are finite. Despite the contributions from several, including role players like Daniel Descalso, Gregor Blanco, Rey Fuentes, Nick Ahmed and Jeremy Hazelbaker, all of his players have important input. Lovullo added, “the line has to stop somewhere.”
In the fan’s balloting, which ended last Thursday, Goldschmidt finished third among NL first baseman, and placed behind starter Ryan Zimmerman of the Nationals and Anthony Rizzo of the Chicago Cubs. Lamb was fifth among third basemen and finished behind Nolan Arenado of the Rockies, the position leader.
Bryce Harper of the Nationals was the overall top vote getter and Aaron Judge of the New York Yankees finished second.
In the Futures Game
Right-hander Jon Duplantier from Advanced-A Visalia was the lone Diamondbacks selection to participate in the Futures Game this Sunday in Marlins Parks.
Just promoted from Single-A Kane County, Duplantier, a 22-year-old out of Newark, Del. was 6-1 and a 1.24 ERA in 12 starts for Kane. In his one appearance through Sunday with Visalia, the 6-4, 225 pounder was 0-0 and 3.38 ERA. That included one start in which he lasted 2.2 innings.
This features the USA versus The World, and initiated just before the 1999 All-Star game.
"Arizona Diamondbacks: Ray, Herrmann reaching impressive heights"
For June, the Diamondbacks announced their minor-league players-of-the-month awards. The position player was infielder Kevin Medrano and Jimmie Sherfy was the pitcher.
During June, Medrano hit .371 for Double-AA Jackson and that included nine doubles, two homers and 16 RBIs in 25 games.
Sherfy did not allow a run in nine games for Triple-A Reno, fanned 14 hitters and allowed two walks in 14.1 innings.