The Tampa Bay Rays were honored in a way that rarely happens for the small-market teams: multiple players are heading to the All-Star Game as nationally-voted fan favorites.
1B Yandy Diaz and LF Randy Arozarena received the news in the visiting clubhouse before the Rays make their next stop on the road trip to Seattle, which happens to be the location of this year’s festivities.
Randy and Yandy are Seattle bound! pic.twitter.com/zNIcJ1oanl— Tampa Bay Rays (@RaysBaseball) June 29, 2023
In a surprise, the rest of the infield and catcher are coming from the Texas Rangers, and not the franchise that usually dominates the voting (the Toronto Blue Jays).
AL All-Star starters:— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) June 29, 2023
C: Jonah Heim, Texas
1B: Yandy Díaz, Tampa Bay
2B: Marcus Semien, Texas
SS: Corey Seager, Texas
3B: Josh Jung, Texas
OF: Mike Trout, Los Angeles
OF: Randy Arozarena, Tampa Bay
OF: Aaron Judge, New York
DH: Shohei Ohtani, Los Angeles
To make it, Yandy Diaz had to best both Blue Jays 1B Vlad Jr, and former Rays first baseman Nate Lowe, the remaining member of the Rangers infield not nominated who won a Silver Slugger last year.
Randy was a star in the pre-season Winter Baseball Classic, so it was a bit of a surprise when he was outside the top-three outfielders when early voting tallies were released, but he ultimately finished second to only Mike Trout in the standings.
This is the most number of starters the Rays have had in an All-Star game since 3B Evan Longoria, LF Carl Crawford, and SP David Price took the field together in the summer of 2010.
For what it’s worth, Randy has also reportedly volunteered for the homerun derby.