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  • Writer's pictureGabe White

2023 MLB All-Star Starters are out! A guide to All Star Week and the All Star Starters.

The Midsummer Classic is dawning upon us, my fellow baseball fans. And even if you're not a baseball fan, or maybe you're my girlfriend reading this, or maybe my mom is reading it too, the All-Star Game and MLB All Star Week are some of the funnest nights of baseball entertainment until playoff baseball come October. This will give you a guide to everything happening from July 7-11th in Seattle, Washington.


All Star week showcases the very best the sport has to offer, at quite literally every level. It all stars with the HBCU game, on Friday, July 7th (MLB Network & MLB.com). This showcases some of the best student-athletes at HBCU's around the country, selected by a panel including Ken Griffey Jr., the MLB, and MLBPA.


Then Saturday, the fun really gets started. All around downtown Seattle, events will be held commemorating the All Star Game, with indoor/outdoor experiences that one can only get through this experience, called the Play Ball Park. Attended by many famous and recognizable faces in Seattle Baseball lore, this will be sure to attract any baseball fans that find themselves in the Pacific Northwest that weekend.


Additionally, the All Star Futures Game takes place that same day, broadcasted also on MLB Network. This one is a personal favorite of mine, with so much talent always being showcased on the field each and every year. As everyone's favorite Orioles fan, we've got 2 players showcasing themselves this year, Jackson Holliday and Heston Kjerstad. Both with unique stories, they each have tremendous talent and have potential to be cornerstones for the Baltimore Orioles for years to come. The Orioles took Kjerstad with the 2nd overall pick in the 2020 MLB Draft, and he has hit over .300 and has an OPS north of .900 in AAA this year for the Norfolk Tides. Holliday, was the No. 1 overall draft choice by the Os just a year ago, and has quickly shot up prospect rankings and the minor leagues. Both will be fun to watch at the Future's Game, as well as the myriad of other talent that will be showcased on national TV. Of course, I'm incredibly biased when it comes to my Os, and I by no means mean to diminish the sheer talent that will be on display during the Future's Game. Additional players I'll have my eye on include Noelvi Marte of the Reds, Padres' Jackson Merrill, and Phillies RHP Mick Abel.


Additionally, Saturday is also the night of the Celebrity Softball Game. I'm gonna be really honest. I'm not much of a fan of this game, but you do get to see some fun celebrities. They bring the walls way in and play slow-pitch softball, making it the ultimate showcase for those who love celebrities and watching them awkwardly play a softball game. Sorry if that's a little pessimistic, I just have never been able to sit down and watch the entirety of the game, but hey, to each their own.


Now we get to the fun stuff. Sunday, July 9th is the MLB Draft. The MLB Draft is unique, considering it is one of few professional sports that allows you to draft players straight from high school, and immediately they go pro. This gives teams a lot to think about, and plenty to analyze leading up to the draft; because they have to try and project how 18 year olds will perform in a league filled with mostly athletes in their late 20s and early 30s. On top of that, they also have to scout out college players, at the D1, D2, D3, JuCo, and NAIA levels respectively. This means the player pool is HUGE, hence why the MLB draft consists of 20 individual rounds. There are so many possible players, it takes months for teams to scheme up their draft boards and plan for every scenario on draft night.

All Star Logo for Seattle

Then, on Monday night, my personal favorite event of the entire All Star series of events. The T-Mobile Home Run Derby. As of this writing, Vladimir Guererro Jr. and Julio Rodgriguez are the only confirmed contestants. Both are SURELY going to


put on a show. Randy Arozarena was quoted as saying he would participate if invited, but no word officially on what the status of that is. The Home Run Derby switched its format in 2015, instituting a time limit rather than just pure swings. This leads to quick flurries of home runs one after another, making the viewing experience much more enjoyable. I HIGHLY recommend watching the Home Run Derby or at least getting a watch party and betting on a winner.


And then, of course, the All Star Game. Baseball's very best on the brightest stage they can offer. They play a 9-inning game with most pitchers throwing 1 inning and hitters getting 1-2 at bats. This keeps the game fresh even if the score isn't necessarily close and keeps viewers engaged, because nearly everyone selected for the All Star Rosters get in-game action. And my personal favorite twist, if the game were to be tied after 9 innings of play, the 2 teams would then take a page from Monday's playbook and have a winner-take-all Home Run Derby. Winning team wins the All Star Game. We've never seen anything like it before, but it would certainly be fantastic to watch and see how it plays out.


The All Star starters themselves have finally been released, as of June 29th. Here are the starting lineups for both the American and National League. In the coming days, the rest of the rosters will be released, including pitching staffs (which are my personal favorite thing to watch about the All Star Game). Stay tuned for my full reaction of the rest of the rosters and my prediction for the Home Run Derby and the game itself. Thanks for reading.

​Posiiton

American League

National League

Catcher

Jonah Heim, TEX

Sean Murphy, ATL

First Base

Yandy Diaz, TB

Freddie Freeman, LAD

Second Base

Marcus Semien, TEX

Luis Arraez, MIA

Shortstop

Corey Seager, TEX

Orlando Arcia, ATL

Third Base

Josh Jung, TEX

Nolan Arenado, STL

Outfield

Mike Trout, LAA

Ronald Acuna Jr, ATL

Outfield

Aaron Judge, NYY

Corbin Carroll, ARI

Outfield

Randy Arozarena, TB

Mookie Betts, LAD

Designated Hitter (DH)

Shohei Ohtani, LAA

J.D. Martinez, LAD





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