With the 2014 MLB All-Star Game set to begin on Tuesday night at 8 p.m. ET, the starting lineups for both the National League and American League were announced on Monday during a press conference.
MLB Public Relations passed along the two lineups in their entirety:
One of the biggest surprises in the two lineups will be Derek Jeter batting leadoff for the AL squad.
The Captain, voted as the starter at shortstop, typically bats second for the New York Yankees, but this is clearly a different case in his final All-Star Game. With Mike Trout batting behind Jeter, Nick Hamelin of BaseballEssential.com passes along his thoughts on the top of the lineup:
Derek Jeter will bat leadoff and Mike Trout will bat second. It seems almost like the passing of the torch from one great to another.— Baseball Report (@NickHamelinMLB) July 14, 2014
As for one player who might be star-struck by Jeter, the man standing next to him at the hot corner can't wait to play on Tuesday night. Josh Donaldson of the Oakland A's spoke of his admiration for Jeter, per Susan Slusser of MLB.com:
Josh Donaldson has repeatedly said what a thrill it will be to play next to Derek Jeter, a dream come true.— Susan Slusser (@susanslusser) July 14, 2014
As is normally the case with retiring players, the All-Star Game will be special for Jeter.
The starting pitchers for both sides were announced, with one of the selections receiving instant scrutiny. While Felix Hernandez was the clear choice for the American League side, Adam Wainwright's selection was debatable.
Hernandez has put together an outstanding start to 2014 with an 11-2 record, 2.12 ERA and 154 strikeouts to earn the nod. The Seattle Mariners ace is likely leading the race for his second Cy Young at the break in the tough American League.
As for the NL starting nod, some believed it should have gone to Clayton Kershaw. Joe Giglio of Bleacher Report and Joe Sheehan of Sports Illustrated noted the surprising revelation:
Adam Wainwright over Clayton Kershaw sounds an awful lot like a manager favoring his own guy.— Joe Giglio (@JoeGiglioSports) July 14, 2014
Last year, it was Matt Harvey over Clayton Kershaw because the ASG was at Citi. Now, it's Adam Wainwright because...Central Time Zone?— Joe Sheehan (@joe_sheehan) July 14, 2014
Wainwright has piled up more innings this season and has been nearly a mirror image of Kershaw. But the Los Angeles Dodgers ace has been on fire over his last eight starts with a 8-0 record and 0.74 ERA, including a no-hitter.
Bob Nightengale of USA Today passed along his thoughts:
Certainly Adam Wainwright has the numbers and has pitched about 40 more innings than Clayton Kershaw— Bob Nightengale (@BNightengale) July 14, 2014
Wainwright also spoke about the opportunity to start before the official announcement (via Jenifer Langosch of MLB.com):
Though he said he wouldn't do much lobbying of his manager for the starting assignment, Wainwright did describe the opportunity to be the NL's first pitcher in the All-Star Game as "something every starter dreams to do."
"Last year, I remember I was pitching the day before the All-Star break and I told Mike, 'If it was any consolation, unless I was starting [the All-Star Game], don't even think about moving my start around because that would be the only thing worthy of doing that,'" Wainwright added. "The way [Matt] Harvey was pitching, it was obvious in [New York City] that he was going to get the start. It's something every starter would take tremendous pride in."
Regardless of the starters for either side, both rosters are undoubtedly loaded with talent. With Kershaw coming in later in the game and Chris Sale slated to toe the rubber for the American League, this should be another entertaining All-Star battle.
With huge bats and arms set to collide on Tuesday night, the lineups and starting pitchers will be long forgotten when the game begins. As for the most memorable moment, expect Jeter to bow out with pride during his last All-Star Game.
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