Armando Sierra, Eybersson Polanco represent Red Sox in Dominican Summer League All-Star Game

A pair of young prospects represented the Red Sox in the 2022 Dominican Summer League All-Star Game in San Cristobal on Sunday.

Armando Sierra served as the American League’s starting first baseman and went 0-for-2 with a flyout and groundout before being replaced at first base by Astros prospect Waner Luciano in the middle of the fifth inning.

Eybersson Polanco, on the other hand, retired all three batters he faced in a scoreless third inning while also striking out one. Interestingly enough, the game ultimately ended in a 6-6 tie.

Sierra, 18, originally signed with the Red Sox for $150,000 as an international free-agent coming out of Sabana Grande de Palenque in January 2021. The 6-foot-2, 189-pounder has proven capable of playing first base and both corner outfield positions thus far into his professional career.

In 35 games with Boston’s Dominican Summer League Blue affiliate this season, the right-handed hitting Sierra has batted a stout .323/.395/.489 with 13 doubles, three home runs, 36 RBIs, 31 runs scored, one stolen base, 15 walks, and 14 strikeouts over 152 plate appearances.

Among qualified DSL hitters, Sierra currently ranks ninth in runs scored, second in doubles, first in RBIs, and ninth in strikeout rate (9.2%), per MiLB.com’s leaderboards.

Polanco, also 18, signed with Boston approximately six months after Sierra did as an international free-agent coming out of Venezuela. The right-hander received a signing bonus of $50,000.

Listed at 6-foot and 170 pounds, Polanco made his professional debut for the DSL Red Sox Red last month and has since posted a 2.03 ERA and 3.00 FIP to go along with 29 strikeouts to 10 walks over seven starts spanning 26 2/3 innings of work.

Among DSL hurlers who have pitched at least 20 innings to this point in the season, Polanco currently ranks 60th in strikeout rate (28.7%), 26th in batting average against (.156), 31st in WHIP (0.90), 55th in ERA, 40th in FIP, and 55th in xFIP (3.51), according to FanGraphs.

(Picture of Dominican Republic flags: Billie Weiss/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images)

Red Sox’ Rafael Devers will bat third for American League in Tuesday’s All-Star Game

Red Sox third baseman Rafael Devers will bat third for the American League in Tuesday’s All-Star Game at Dodger Stadium, AL manager Dusty Baker announced earlier Monday morning.

Devers, who was named the American League’s starting third baseman for the second straight year earlier this month, will be batting between Yankees right fielder Aaron Judge and Blue Jays first baseman Vladimir Guerrero Jr.

The 25-year-old slugger last manned the hot corner at Dodger Stadium in Game 5 of the 2018 World Series, when the Red Sox defeated the Dodgers by a final score of 5-1 to win the Fall Classic four games to one.

In addition to Devers, Xander Bogaerts — who was voted in as a reserve by the players — and J.D. Martinez — who was selected as an injury replacement for Houston’s Yordan Alvarez — will come off the bench for the American League on Tuesday night.

While the trio of Bogaerts, Devers, Martinez will be representing the Red Sox, some of their former teammates will be there as well. Mookie Betts, Andrew Benintendi, Kyle Schwarber were also named All-Stars, as was former Boston farmhand Santiago Espinal.

All that being said, the 92nd Midsummer Classic will get underway from Los Angeles on Tuesday at 7:30 p.m. eastern time on FOX. Dodgers left-hander Clayton Kershaw and Rays southpaw Shane McClanahan will start on the mound for the National and American League, respectively.

(Picture of Rafael Devers: Maddie Malhotra/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images)

J.D. Martinez joins Rafael Devers and Xander Bogaerts in representing Red Sox at All-Star Game

Red Sox designated hitter J.D. Martinez is headed to the 2022 MLB All-Star Game at Dodger Stadium, Major League Baseball announced on Tuesday. The veteran slugger will replace the injured Yordan Alvarez of the Astros on the American League roster.

Now a five-time All-Star, Martinez originally finished behind the likes of Angels phenom Shohei Ohtani and Alvarez in both fan and player voting for the starting and reserve designated hitter spots. But Alvarez was placed on the 10-day injured list because of right hand inflammation on Sunday, making him ineligible to compete in the 92nd Midsummer Classic.

Because Martinez was the next designated hitter in line on the player ballot, he will join teammates Rafael Devers and Xander Bogaerts in representing the Red Sox in Los Angeles next Tuesday. In addition to Martinez taking over for Alvarez, the Giants’ Carlos Rodon and the Marlins’ Garrett Cooper were named replacements in the National League for the Brewers’ Josh Hader and the Phillies’ Bryce Harper, respectively.

Martinez, who turns 35 next month, has made the American League All-Star team in four of his five seasons (2018-2019, 2021-2022) with Boston. There was no All-Star Game in 2020 due to the nature of the COVID-shortened season.

In 76 games this season, Martinez is batting .313/.380/.500 with 29 doubles, nine home runs, 38 RBIs, 50 runs scored, 30 walks, and 78 strikeouts across 337 trips to the plate.

As is the case with Bogaerts, Martinez can become a free-agent at the end of the year. So this very well may be the final time he represents the Red Sox in an All-Star Game.

(Picture of J.D. Martinez: Billie Weiss/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images)

Xander Bogaerts named All-Star reserve, joining Rafael Devers in representing Red Sox

Red Sox shortstop Xander Bogaerts has been selected as a reserve for the American League All-Star team, Major League Baseball announced on Sunday.

Bogaerts will be heading to his fourth All-Star Game at Dodger Stadium on July 19. He will be joined in Los Angeles by teammate Rafael Devers, who was named the starting third baseman for the American League for the second consecutive year on Friday.

Following a 2-for-4 showing in Sunday night’s 11-6 win over the Yankees, Bogaerts is now batting .311/.389/.449 on the season with 21 doubles, seven home runs, 35 RBIs, 50 runs scored, three stolen bases, 35 walks, and 70 strikeouts over 82 games and 350 plate appearances.

Among American League shortstops, the right-handed hitting 29-year-old ranks first in doubles, fourth in RBIs, first in runs scored, first in walks drawn, first in batting average, first in on-base percentage, third in slugging percentage, and first in OPS (.838).

Despite those impressive numbers, Bogaerts finished behind the White Sox’ Tim Anderson (who will be starting at shortstop for the AL) and the Blue Jays’ Bo Bichette in fan voting. He was selected as a reserve through player voting.

Barring any changes in the coming days, Bogaerts and Devers will be the only two players in the 92nd Midsummer Classic. The two started at shortstop and third base for the American League in last year’s exhibition at Coors Field.

Besides Bogaerts and Devers, catcher Christian Vazquez, designated hitter J.D. Martinez, starter Nick Pivetta, and reliever John Schreiber were among those on the team who garnered at least some All-Star consideration.

In Bogaerts’ case in particular, this could very well be the last time he represents the Red Sox in the All-Star Game. The native Aruban can — and most likely will — opt out of the final three years of the six-year, $120 million extension he signed with Boston in April 2019 in favor of becoming a free agent.

Former members of the Red Sox who will be joining Bogaerts and Devers in Los Angeles next week include first-time All-Stars Andrew Benintendi and Martin Perez, two-time All-Star Kyle Schwarber, and six-time All-Star Mookie Betts.

(Picture of Xander Bogaerts: Maddie Malhotra/Boston Red Sox/Getty Images)

Red Sox’ Rafael Devers named starting third baseman for American League in All-Star Game for second straight year

For the second straight year, Rafael Devers has been named the starting third baseman for the American League All-Star team, Major League Baseball announced on Friday. Devers will represent the Red Sox in the 92nd MLB All-Star Game at Dodger Stadium on July 19.

After being named a finalist to start at third base alongside Cleveland’s Jose Ramirez last Thursday, Devers ultimately beat out the Guardians star by receiving 60 percent of the Phase 2 vote.

Coming into play on Friday, Devers was batting a stout .330/.387/.598 with 27 doubles, one triple, 19 home runs, 51 RBIs, 59 runs scored, two stolen bases, 25 walks, and 61 strikeouts over 79 games (351 plate appearances) so far this season.

Among qualified American Leaguers, the left-handed hitting 25-year-old ranks first in hits (106), first in doubles, seventh in homers, second in runs scored, 10th in RBIs, second in batting average, seventh in on-base percentage, fourth in slugging percentage, third in OPS (.986), eighth in isolated power (.268), third in wRC+ (173), and first in fWAR (4.4), per FanGraphs.

While Devers is Boston’s lone representative in the Midsummer Classic at the moment, some of his teammates — such as Xander Bogaerts or Nick Pivetta — could still be joining him in Los Angeles. Pitchers and reserves for both the American and National League teams will not be unveiled until Sunday.

Opposite of Devers, Padres third baseman will be starting at the hot corner for the National League. Former Red Sox outfielder Mookie Betts also made his second All-Star team as a member of the Dodgers.

(Picture of Rafael Devers: Elsa/Getty Images)

Red Sox ‘lobbying hard’ for MLB All-Star Game to return to Fenway Park, Sam Kennedy says

The Red Sox would like to host the MLB All-Star Game sometime in the not-so-distant future, team CEO and president Sam Kennedy said when speaking with reporters at JetBlue Park on Tuesday.

“We are lobbying hard at the Major League Baseball level,” said Kennedy. “I think we’re finally coming up in the rotation at some point here. 1999 was amazing. That was just an incredible night so we’d love to have the All-Star Game back.”

As Kennedy pointed out, the Red Sox last hosted the All-Star Game at Fenway Park in 1999, when MLB honored its All-Century team. According to MassLive.com’s Chris Cotillo, the club would like to bring the Midsummer Classic back to Boston within the next five years.

“The Sox are aggressively pushing for the Midsummer Classic to come back to Boston in the coming years, multiple sources said, and have had discussions with Major League Baseball about doing so,” Cotillo wrote on Tuesday. “Word is that two specific years — 2025 and 2027 — are on the club’s radar.”

Why 2025 and 2027? Well, MLB has already determined where three of the next five All-Star Games will be. Los Angeles’ Dodger Stadium will host the game this summer while Seattle’s T-Mobile Park will do so next year.

The 2024 slot remains available, though Philadelphia’s Citizens Bank Park will host the keystone event in 2026 to mark the 250th anniversary of the signing of the Declaration of Independence.

With that, the Red Sox do have some options when it comes to hosting the game, though Kennedy reiterated Tuesday that the team would prefer it returns to Boston sooner rather than later.

“ASAP,” Kennedy said when asked about a potential year. “When it’s available, when it works for Major League Baseball, we’d love to be considered.”

Since it first opened in 1912, Fenway Park has hosted the All-Star Game on three separate occasions: 1946, 1961, and 1999. The city of Boston, on the other hand, has hosted four Midsummer Classics since the 1936 installment was held at Braves Field — which was then called National League Park.

(Picture of Fenway Park: Adam Glanzman/Getty Images)

Red Sox at the All-Star Game: Xander Bogaerts, Rafael Devers, J.D. Martinez combine for 3 hits; Nathan Eovaldi, Matt Barnes toss scoreless inning each in American League’s 5-2 win

The American League bested the National League by a final score of 5-2 in the 91st MLB All-Star Game at Coors Field in Denver on Tuesday night, and the Red Sox’ five All-Star representatives played a significant role in making that happen.

Xander Bogaerts

Bogaerts, making his second career All-Star Game start in his third overall appearance, got the start at shortstop for the American League while batting out of the three-hole.

The 28-year-old went 2-for-3 on the night with an RBI and a pair of singles, the second of which came off Marlins starter Trevor Rogers and drove in Orioles’ All-Star Cedric Mullins with two outs in the top of the fifth inning that gave the American League a 4-0 lead at the time it was hit.

Per Baseball Savant, Bogaerts’ two base hits had exit velocities of 109 mph and 92 mph respectively.

He also turned a nifty, unassisted double play to help fellow Sox All-Star Nathan Eovaldi to get out of the bottom of the fourth inning unscathed.

Rafael Devers

Devers, making his first career All-Star Game start in his first overall appearance, started alongside Bogaerts at third base as the two became the first pair of Red Sox teammates to start in the same Midsummer Classic on the left side of the infield.

Batting two spots behind Bogaerts out of the five-hole, the 24-year-old slugger followed a leadoff walk drawn by Aaron Judge in the top half of the second inning by lacing a 106.6 mph double off Brewers starter Corbin Burnes that advanced Judge up to third.

An RBI single courtesy of Blue Jays starter Marcus Semien brought in Judge from third, giving the American League their first lead of the night at 1-0.

Fast forward to the fourth, and Devers — matched up against Rockies All-Star German Marquez — grounded out to shortstop for the first out of the inning, but it was a grounder that left the left-handed hitter’s bat at a scorching 106.3 mph.

Devers, like Bogaerts, was pulled in the middle of the fifth inning.

J.D. Martinez

Martinez, making his fourth career All-Star appearance and his third with the Red Sox, replaced starting designated hitter Shohei Ohtani with no outs and runners in the corners in the fifth inning. He proceeded to strike out on three pitches against Rogers.

The 33-year-old also fanned on four pitches against Brewers All-Star Freddy Peralta in the top half of the seventh, so he finished the night going 0-for-2 with a pair of punchouts.

Nathan Eovaldi

Eovaldi, one of three first-time All-Stars the Red Sox sent to Denver along with Devers and closer Matt Barnes, got the call from his former manager Kevin Cash to take over for Rangers starter Kyle Gibson in the middle of the fourth.

Working on six days rest, the 31-year-old right-hander needed all of 10 pitches (8 strikes) to get through a scoreless frame of relief in which he faced the minimum three batters thanks to that aforementioned double play started by Bogaerts on a Nick Castellanos groundball.

Of the 10 pitches Eovaldi threw on Tuesday, three were splitters, three were four-seam fastballs, one was a curveball, and one was a cutter. The flame-throwing righty induced two total swings-and-misses while topping out at 99.2 mph with his heater. No 100+ mph heat from him.

Matt Barnes

Barnes, making his first career All-Star appearance, did not pitch in the ninth inning as he has primarily done for the Red Sox this season, but he was responsible for a bottom half of the eighth that had plenty of tension.

Fresh off inking a two-year extension to remain in Boston for the foreseeable future over the weekend, the 31-year-old entered with a 5-2 lead to protect, but proceeded to lad the bases on two singles and a walk in the process of recording the first two outs of the frame.

With one out to get, Barnes was matched up against a dangerous opponent in the form of the Cubs’ Kris Bryant, and he fell in behind in the count at 3-0 to make matters even worse.

On the fourth pitch of the at-bat, a 96 mph fastball on the outer half of the plate, the fiery right-hander got Bryant to lift a 296-foot lineout to Angels All-Star Jared Walsh in left field.

It was a lineout that required Walsh, who has never played left field at the major-league level, to make a superb sliding catch, but the out was recorded nonetheless to get Barnes and the American League out of the inning.

Of the 25 pitches (14 strikes) Barnes threw on Tuesday, 18 were four-seam fastballs and seven were curveballs. He topped out at 97.1 mph with his heater.

In tossing a scoreless eighth inning, Barnes wound up picking up the hold as White Sox closer Liam Hendriks shut the door on the National League in the ninth to notch the hold and secure a 5-2 victory victory for the American League.

With the win, the AL has now taken eight consecutive All-Star Games from the NL.

Blue Jays All-Star first baseman Vladimir Guerrero Jr. was named the game’s Most Valuable Player, as he hit the 200th home run in All-Star Game history, which also happened to be a 468-foot blast that left his bat at 110.2 mph.

Guerrero Jr., 22, becomes the youngest player to be named All-Star Game MVP in the game’s history, which dates back to 1933.

(Picture of Matt Barnes, Nathan Eovaldi, Xander Bogaerts, Rafael Devers, and J.D. Martinez: Boston Red Sox)

Red Sox’ Xander Bogaerts, Rafael Devers named to American League All-Star team as starters

Red Sox infielders Xander Bogaerts and Rafael Devers have been named to the American League All-Star team as starters, Major League Baseball announced Thursday night.

Bogaerts becomes an All-Star for the third time in his career and is slated to start an All-Star Game for just the second time after getting the starting nod at shortstop for the American League back in 2016.

Following a 1-for-4 showing at the plate in Boston’s 15-1 win over the Royals at Fenway Park on Thursday, the 28-year-old is now slashing .329/.391/.550 with 25 doubles, 13 home runs, 48 RBI, 50 runs scored, 29 walks, 57 strikeouts, and five stolen bases through his first 77 games (325 plate appearances) of the 2021 season.

Among qualified American League shortstops, Bogaerts came into play Thursday ranking first in hits (94), first in doubles (24), third in homers, third in runs scored (49), third in RBI, first in batting average (.330), second in on-base percentage, first in slugging percentage (.551), first in OPS (.942), first in weighted on-base average (.400), second in wRC+ (151), and first in fWAR, per FanGraphs.

“For Xander to be a starter, that means the world. He’s one of the best, if not the best shortstop in the big-leagues,” Red Sox manager Alex Cora said following the rout over Kansas City on Thursday afternoon. “The way he goes about his business, it’s amazing. I’ve been saying all along, he’s the most consistent in this organization. He’s amazing. Day in and day out he shows up, he works and he goes out there and performs. There’s no red flags on the field and off the field. This kid got here and he contributed to win a World Series.”

By finishing in first place in regards to the fan vote, Bogaerts beat out the likes of Toronto’s Bo Bichette and Houston’s Carlos Correa for the top spot among AL shortstops.

Devers, meanwhile, becomes an All-Star for the first time in his young career after nearly making the team in 2019.

The 24-year-old enjoyed a productive day at the plate on Thursday, as he went 3-for-5 a home run, three runs scored, and five runs driven in to raise his batting line on the season to .288/.359/.582.

The homer, a 426-foot three-run blast, was his 20th of the season, while his five RBI brought his total on the year up to an American League-leading 69 through 78 games (329 plate appearances).

As of Thursday morning, Devers ranked first among qualified AL third basemen in hits (81), first in doubles (24), first in home runs (19), second in runs scored (52), first in RBI, first in batting average (.282), fourth in on-base percentage (.355), first in slugging percentage (.571), first in OPS (.926), first in isolated power (.289), first in weighted on-base average (.387), first in wRC+ (143), and first in fWAR (3.0), according to FanGraphs.

Devers finished in first place among American League third baseman in terms of fan votes, as he beat out Houston’s Alex Bregman and Chicago’s Yoan Moncada for the No. 1 spot.

“[With] Raffy, we had a conversation early in the season, actually in spring training. It was him understanding what was going on in the business,” said Cora. “Looking around and everybody’s talking about all these young kids, right? (Fernando) Tatis, (Ronald) Acuña, (Vladimir Guerrero Jr.), (Cavan) Biggio, (Bo) Bichette, and people forget about the fact that he’s 24. He led the big leagues in extra-base hits two years ago and he’s doing what he’s doing now. For him to get recognized, I know it it means the world for him, it means the world for the organization.”

To put it simply, both Bogaerts and Devers are having stellar seasons with the Red Sox to this point, and the two teammates will become the first pair of Boston infielders ever to start in the same All-Star Game at shortstop and third base.

J.D. Martinez and Alex Verdugo, who were both named All-Star finalists along with Bogaerts and Devers on Sunday, were not named as starters for the American League side on Thursday.

That being the case because Martinez finished second behind Angels two-way phenom Shohei Ohtani to start at designated hitter for the AL, while Verdugo finished ninth among eligible AL outfielders and behind the likes of the Angels’ Mike Trout, the Yankees’ Aaron Judge, and the Blue Jays’ Teoscar Hernandez.

While Martinez and Verdugo will not start this year’s Midsummer Classic, there is still a chance for both of them to partake in the festivities, as pitchers and reserves for both the American League and National League teams will be announced on Sunday, July 4.

From there, All-Star Week will begin in Denver on July 11 with the All-Star Futures Game, and the All-Star Game itself will take place at Coors Field on July 13.

(Picture of Xander Bogaerts and Rafael Devers: Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)