Flagstaff’s Diaz sparks SL to All-Star triumph

MINNEAPOLIS – Flagstaff catcher Elias Diaz connected on a key three-run home run as the South League won its second All-Star Game in three seasons with a 5-3 victory.

Diaz had two hits and scored twice in becoming the third Elk player to earn MVP honors, joining Bobby Crosby (2006) and Rich Harden (2009). The SL victory trimmed the North’s advantage in the series to 10-8.

Louisville’s Max Scherzer, the second of the South’s 10 pitchers, earned the victory with two strikeouts in his one inning.

Pittsburgh first baseman Freddie Freeman, a former All-Star MVP, was the only player with two hits for the North. He staked the NL to an early 1-0 lead with an RBI double after Boston’s Jeff McNeil drew a walk from Dublin’s Jacob deGrom to start the game.

But the South pulled even in the second when Guinness first baseman tripled off Ottawa’s Blake Snell with one out and scored on a double by Tijuana’s Brandon Nimmo.

Diaz started the SL’s go-ahead rally an inning later by greeting Vancouver’s Chris Sale with a leadoff single. After two ground outs moved Diaz to third, the Long Rifles’ Francisco Lindor singled through the right side to make it 2-1.

After Nimmo drew a one-out walk from the Cobras’ Cole Hamels in the fourth, Oakland’s Justin Turner singled back up the middle to put runners on the corners. Diaz then drove an 0-2 pitch over the wall in right field for a 5-1 advantage.

While the South managed just one more hit against the final five NL pitchers, the North could not battle all the way back. Brooklyn’s Trevor Story plated Freeman with a double off Flagstaff’s Kyle Freeland in the fifth, and the Cubs’ Dee Gordon reached on an error in the seventh before scoring on a single by Calgary’s Max Muncy.

But Dublin’s Brad Hand retired five of the six batters he faced in the eighth and ninth and Oakland’s Edwin Diaz notched the save by striking out Muncy to end the game.

Box Score

PGBL ALL-STAR GAME HISTORY

2002 – North, 5-3. MVP – Chipper Jones, Ottawa
WP – P.Martinez (TOR). LP – Maddux (MEM). Sv. – Sasaki (VAN).
HR – none.
2003 – North, 8-6 (12). MVP – Tim Salmon, Brooklyn
WP – Millwood (CHI). LP – J.Santana (STL). Sv – Mesa (BOS).
HR – North: B.Williams (OTT), Salmon (BRK).
2004 – South, 4-2. MVP – Juan Gonzalez, Louisville
WP – T.Hudson (LV). LP – P.Martinez (TOR). Sv – Wagner (LV).
HR – South: J.Gonzalez (LOU), V.Guerrero (LOU); North: Pujols (MAN).
2005 – South, 6-1. MVP – Alfonso Soriano, Key West
WP – T.Hudson (LV). LP – J.Santana (OTT).
HR – North: V.Guerrero (TOR); South: A.Soriano (KW).
2006 – South, 4-3. MVP – Bobby Crosby, Flagstaff
WP – Wagner (LV). LP – Pettitte (CHI). Sv – T.Jones (LOU).
HR – South: Ensberg (MEM); North: Crisp (CLE), Ar.Ramirez (CLE).
2007 – South, 4-2. MVP – Victor Martinez, Taiwan
WP – Liriano (LOU). LP – Sabathia (CLE). Sv – Saito (LOU).
HR – North: J.Rivera (PIT).
2008 – South, 9-4. MVP – Alex Rodriguez, Key West
WP – K.Escobar (KW). LP – Peavy (CLE).
HR – South: A.Rodriguez (KW); North: D.Ortiz (CLE).
2009 – South, 7-4. MVP – Rich Harden, Flagstaff
WP – Lidge (LOU). LP – Downs (CWS). Sv – Wagner (LV).
HR – South: McCann (MEM).
2010 – North, 4-3. MVP – Adrian Gonzalez, Vancouver
WP – T.Hanson (BC). LP – Porcello (STL). Sv – F.Rodriguez (BOS).
HR – South: M.Diaz (ALA), McCann (MEM); North: A.Gonzalez (VAN), A.Hill (PIT).
2011 – North, 3-0. MVP – Adam Wainwright, Pittsburgh
WP – Wainwright (PIT). LP – Oswalt (TIJ). Sv – Rivera (CHI).
HR – North: A.Rodriguez (BC).
2012 – North, 5-4. MVP – Ben Zobrist, Ottawa
WP – Putz (CGY). LP – J.Tomlin (LV). Sv – Farnsworth (LON).
HR – South: Bautista (MEM).
2013 – North, 6-2. MVP – Buster Posey, Brooklyn
WP – Kimbrel (PIT). LP – R.Soriano (STL).
HR – South: Cano (TIJ).
2014 – North, 5-2. MVP – Freddie Freeman, Pittsburgh
WP – Scherzer (BC). LP – Bumgarner (COM). Sv – Uehara (LON)
HR – North: Freeman (PIT)
2015 – North, 5-4 (10). MVP – Josh Donaldson, Ottawa
WP – McGee (OTT). LP – Betances (COM).
HR – North: C.Gomez (BC), Donaldson (OTT).
2016 – North, 5-2. MVP – Kyle Schwarber, Boston
WP – Sale (VAN). LP – Greinke (OAK).
HR – South: Hundley (STL); North: Schwarber (BOS) 2.
2017 – South, 9-5. MVP – Ryon Healy, Memphis
WP – Jansen (DUB). LP – Betances (LON).
HR – North: Cespedes (BOS), Donaldson (OTT); South: Healy (MEM) 2.
2018 – North, 10-1. MVP – J.D. Martinez, Cleveland
WP – Carrasco (OTT). LP – deGrom (DUB).
HR – North: Correa (OTT), JD.Martinez (CLE), Harper (CLE).
2019 – South, 5-3. MVP – Elias Diaz, Flagstaff
WP – Scherzer (LOU). LP – Sale (VAN). Sv – Ed.Diaz (OAK).
HR – South: El.Diaz (FLG).

Nola, deGrom to start All-Star Game

Twenty more first-time selections were among the pitchers and reserves added to the rosters for the 2019 PGBL All-Star Game.

Chicago’s Aaron Nola, one of the newcomers, and Dublin’s Jacob deGrom will start on the mound, with deGrom getting the South League nod for a second straight season.

Brooklyn second baseman Dee Gordon is the only hitter on the North League bench with All-Star experience. Joining him are Cubs teammate Trevor Story, catcher Yan Gomes of Chicago, Pittsburgh teammates Anthony Rendon and Ronald Acuna, and Calgary’s Max Muncy.

The South reserves are led by three-time All-Star J.D. Martinez of Louisville and two-timer Scooter Gennett of Tijuana. Other hitters on the SL bench are Tyler White of Las Vegas, Adalberto Mondesi of host Twin City, and the Memphis duo of Alex Bregman and Juan Soto.

Vancouver’s Chris Sale returns to the NL pitching staff for his sixth appearance in seven seasons after missing last year’s game. The Cardinals put four hurlers on the team in Nola, Gerrit Cole, Justin Verlander and Craig Kimbrel.

The rest of the NL staff features returnee Cole Hamels of Pittsburgh and newcomers Blake Snell of Ottawa, Cody Allen of Cleveland and Boston releivers Raisel Iglesias and Craig Stammen.

Oakland’s Zack Greinke , while Louisville’s Max Scherzer of the Long Rifles makes his fourth straight appearance and fifth overall. The squad’s other starting pitchers are four-time pick Zack Greinke of Oakland and ERA leader Kyle Freeland of Flagstaff.

Four-time pick Dellin Betances of Dublin joins five new selections among South releivers: Guinness teammate Brad Hand, Athletes closer Edwin Diaz, Melee teammates Jose Leclerc and Aroldis Chapman, and Compton representative Reyes Moronta.

NORTH LEAGUE ALL-STARS
Pitchers
Aaron Nola, Chicago (SP)
Chris Sale, Vancouver
Blake Snell, Ottawa
Gerrit Cole, Chicago
Justin Verlander, Chicago
Cole Hamels, Pittsburgh
Craig Kimbrel, Chicago
Raisel Iglesias, Boston
Craig Stammen, Boston
Cody Allen, Cleveland
Reserves
Yan Gomes, Chicago
Max Muncy, Calgary
Dee Gordon, Brooklyn
Trevor Story, Brooklyn
Anthony Rendon, Pittsburgh
Ronald Acuna, Pittsburgh

SOUTH LEAGUE ALL-STARS
Pitchers
Jacob deGrom, Dublin (SP)
Max Scherzer, Louisville
Zack Greinke, Oakland
Kyle Freeland, Flagstaff
Dellin Betances, Dublin
Brad Hand, Dublin
Jose Leclerc, Memphis
Aroldis Chapman, Memphis
Reyes Moronta, Compton
Edwin Diaz Oakland
Reserves
Tyler White, Las Vegas
Scooter Gennett, Tijuana
Alex Bregman, Memphis
Adalberto Mondesi, Twin City
Juan Soto, Memphis
J.D. Martinez, Louisville

Seven first-time all-stars named starters

Chicago’s Mike Trout will make his fifth All-Star start in seven seasons, while seven newcomers will be in the lineups when the Twin City Truckers host the 2019 PGBL All-Star Game.

Five of the first-time All-Stars will join Trout on the North League starting squad, including left fielder Robbie Grossman who was claimed by Calgary on waivers after a strong first half for Brooklyn.

The other NL first-timers are Vancouver catcher JT Realmuto; Boston second baseman Jeff McNeil; London third baseman Asdrubal Cabrera and Toronto DH Shohei Ohtani. Arsenal outfielder Yasiel Puig rounds out the NL outfield, while Pittsburgh teammates Freddie Freeman and Manny Machado will start at first base and shortstop, respectively.

The South League lineup has just two newcomers in Flagstaff catcher Elias Diaz and Tijuana DH Brandon Nimmo. Dublin first baseman Paul Goldschmidt starts for the third time in five seasons, while Louisville’s Jose Altuve makes his second SL start (2015) and third overall at second base.

St. Louis left fielder David Peralta also makes his first SL start since 2015, while Long Rifles shortstop Francisco Lindor returns for the first time since starting in 2016. Outfielders Christan Yelich of the Athletics and Mookie Betts of the Guinness are back in the starting lineup after a one-year absence. Oakland third-baseman Justin Turner, a two-time reserve, gets the nod at third.

Trout is the only starter from last year’s game chosen to start again this year. Machado and Altuve were NL backups a year ago.

The pitchers and reserves will be announced in the near future.

2019 ALL-STAR STARTERS
North League

C – J.T. Realmuto, Vancouver
1B – Freddie Freeman, Pittsburgh
2B – Jeff McNeil, Boston
SS – Manny Machado, Pittsburgh
3B – Asdrubal Cabrera, London
LF – Robbie Grossman, Calgary
CF – Mike Trout, Chicago
RF – Yasiel Puig, London
DH – Shohei Ohtani, Toronto
South League
C – Elias Diaz, Flagstaff
1B – Paul Goldschmidt, Dublin
2B – Jose Altuve, Louisville
SS – Francisco Lindor, Louisville
3B – Justin Turner, Oakland
LF – David Peralta, St. Louis
CF – Christian Yelich, Oakland
RF – Mookie Betts, Dublin
DH – Brandon Nimmo, Tijuana

Martinez, big inning spark NL to All-Star rout

TORONTO – J.D. Martinez hit a two-run homer in the first inning and the North League erupted for seven runs in the seventh in a 10-1 victory in the PGBL All-Star Game at Nationals Park.

Martinez, the designated hitter from the Cleveland Tribe, earned MVP honors, scoring twice in addition to the two-run blast. The NL also got homers from Tribe teammate Bryce Harper and Ottawa shortstop Carlos Correa.

Calgary starter Yu Darvish allowed a run on two hits in two innings before five NL pitchers blanked the South the rest of the way. Ottawa’s Carlos Carrasco was credited with the win as North pitchers totaled 13 strikeouts.

Two batters after Brooklyn catcher Buster Posey hit a leadoff double off Dublin’s Jacob deGrom, Martinez tagged the first pitch he saw over the left field fence to stake the North to a 2-0 lead.

In the second, the SL cut the lead in half when Memphis’ Nolan Arenado hit a one-out triple off Darvish and scored on a sacrifice fly by Clydesdales shortstop Paul DeJong.

Harper hit a leadoff homer in the fourth off Louisville’s Max Scherzer, who was the opening day starter for the host Toronto Tigers before getting traded to the Long Rifles.

The NL then broke the game open in the seventh against Oakland’s Zack Greinke and Tijuana’s David Price. Grienke allowed a leadoff single to Brooklyn’s Lonnie Chisenhall and walked Pittsburgh’s Manny Machado before Correa drove a 1-0 pitch out to left to make it 6-1.

After Martinez drew a walk, Price relieved Greinke. Harper reached on an error by Long Rifles second baseman Jonathan Schoop and Martinez came hoome on Ottawa’s Justin Smoak single to left.

London’s Jose Altuve lined a double to the gap in right-center that scored Harper and Calgary’s Tommy Pham plated Smoak and Altuve with asingle to center.

The South’s only hit after the fourth came on a single by Dublin’s Jose Ramirez with two outs in the eighth, loading the bases after the Tigers’ Kevin Gausman walked the first two batters he saw before striking out a pair.

Gausman escaped the jam by getting Clydesdales catcher Kevan Smith to ground out. Tribe closer Roberto Osuna finished with a perfect ninth, striking out Chris Taylor of St. Louis and Louisville’s George Springer to end the game.

The NL improved to 10-7 in All-Star Game history (dating to 2002) with it’s eighth win in the last nine contests.

Box score

Darvish, deGrom tabbed to start All-Star Game

Traded for each other before the season, Dublin’s Jacob deGrom and Calgary’s Yu Darvish have been named the starting pitchers for the 2018 All-Star Game to be hosted by the Toronto Tigers at Nationals Park.

South League starter deGrom entered the All-Star break with a 10-2 mark and a sparkling 1.96 ERA for the Guinness, while NL pick Darvish owned a 13-4 mark with a 2.36 ERA.

Calgary acquired Darvish and NL starting third baseman Adrian Beltre along with two other players in a preseason deal with Dublin, with deGrom among a package of three players and four draft picks going to the Guinness.

With deGrom joined by teammate Stephen Strasburg on the SL staff, Dublin matched division rivals Louisville and St. Louis with five representatives apiece. Brandon Belt and Jose Ramirez were named as reserves to accompany starting catcher Willson Contreras.

Louisville’s four additions to starting second baseman Jonathan Schoop are outfielders George Springer and Corey Dickerson, first baseman Ryan Zimmerman and pitcher Max Scherzer. St. Louis will be represented by pitcher Chase Anderson, utility player Chris Taylor, catcher Kevan Smith and starting shortstop Paul DeJong.

League-leading Oakland added pitcher Zack Greinke to its group of four elected starters, while the other six SL teams each had one representative. Brandon Morrow was picked to represent Twin City, David Price for Tijuana, Luke Weaver for Compton and Cesar Hernandez for Flagstaff.

Ottawa and Cleveland each have four players on the NL squad. Pitchers Carlos Carrasco and David Robertson and first baseman Justin Smoak were added to the roster for the Argonauts, while the Tribe had closer Roberto Osuna and shortstop Jean Segura added to their two players voted to the lineup.

Darvish and Beltre are joined by outfielder Tommy Pham in giving Calgary three players on. Boston will also have three representatives with catcher Alex Avila and outfielder Yoenis Cespedes added to the bench.

Second baseman Jose Altuve makes London the only NL team with one All-Star. The host Tigers have Kevin Gausman and Josh Hader on the pitching staff while Pittsburgh’s Manny Machado and Cole Hamels were also among the additions.

Brooklyn outfielder Lonnie Chisenhall completes the NL bench while Vancouver’s Kenta Maeda rounds out the pitching staff.

SOUTH LEAGUE ALL-STARS
Pitchers
Jacob deGrom (SP), Dublin
Chase Anderson, St. Louis
Zack Greinke, Oakland
Brandon Morrow, Twin City
David Price, Tijuana
Max Scherzer, Louisville
Stephen Strasburg, Dublin
Luke Weaver, Compton

Reserves
Brandon Belt, Dublin
Corey Dickerson, Louisville
Cesar Hernandez, Flagstaff
Jose Ramirez, Dublin
Kevan Smith, St. Louis
George Springer, Louisville
Chris Taylor, St. Louis
Ryan Zimmerman, Louisville

Lineup
RF Avisail Garcia, Oakland
1B Joey Votto, Oakland
CF Aaron Judge, St. Louis
DH Jose Martinez, Las Vegas
2B Jonathan Schoop, Louisville
C Willson Contreras, Dublin
3B Nolan Arenado, Memphis
SS Paul DeJong, St. Louis
LF Rhys Hoskins, Oakland

NORTH LEAGUE ALL-STARS
Pitchers
Yu Darvish (SP), Calgary
Carlos Carrasco, Ottawa
Kevin Gausman, Toronto
Josh Hader, Toronto
Cole Hamels, Pittsburgh
Kenta Maeda, Vancouver
Roberto Osuna, Cleveland
David Robertson, Ottawa

Reserves
Jose Altuve, London
Alex Avila, Boston
Yoenis Cespedes, Boston
Lonnie Chisenhall, Brooklyn
Manny Machado, Pittsburgh
Tommy Pham, Calgary
Jean Segura, Cleveland
Justin Smoak, Ottawa

Lineup
C Buster Posey, Brooklyn
SS Carlos Correa, Ottawa
DH J.D. Martinez, Cleveland
LF Bryce Harper, Cleveland
1B Justin Bour, Boston
2B Daniel Murphy, Vancouver
CF Mike Trout, Chicago
LF Giancarlo Stanton, Chicago
3B Adrian Beltre, Calgary

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