BOSTON -- Red Sox left-hander Jon Lester will be joining his manager John Farrell in Minnesota for the All-Star Game July 15.
Nine-time All-Star David Ortiz, however, will not.
As part of the “Taco Bell All-Star Selection Show” on ESPN Sunday night, Lester was announced as a manager’s decision for this year’s game, his third time making the American League team. Lester was the only Red Sox player announced as part of the initial 33-man roster.
Red Sox closer Koji Uehara is in line to be named to the team as a replacement pitcher by Farrell in the coming days. Farrell indicated a number of pitchers will be replaced because they are scheduled to pitch the Sunday before the break. Uehara has converted 18 of 19 save opportunities this season, posting a 1.30 ERA and striking out 52 in 41 2/3 innings.
After jumping out to a quick lead at designated hitter in the All-Star fan vote, Ortiz eventually lost to Baltimore Orioles slugger Nelson Cruz, who is tied for the major league lead in home runs (27) and leads in RBIs (71). Ortiz has turned in a strong year at the plate, hitting .261 and leading Boston with 19 home runs and 55 RBIs.
Ortiz was named an All-Star every year from 2004-2008, as well as from 2010-2013.
“There were a couple of conversations that led up to the selection of it,” Farrell said. “Had a chance to talk to David and felt like the four days of rest might be more advantageous to him. And he was a pro about it -- spoke his mind and really had a lot of input into the decision.”
In the midst of a career year, Lester is 9-7 with a 2.73 ERA in 18 starts. His 122 strikeouts are second to Tampa Bay’s David Price among AL left-handers while his ERA ranks sixth in the AL.
“When you look at what Jon has been able to do in terms of where he stacks up with other starters -- in the top five or top six in most pitching categories -- he has earned the selection,” Farrell said.