Halladay, Hill starters for the AL
It’s nice when the stars allign and certain players earn exactly what they deserve. This is not always the case with baseball’s annual All-Star Game, which tends to be a popularity contest when it comes to the starting position players and is often about first-half standouts when it comes to the starting pitchers.
That’s not the case this year for Jays second baseman Aaron Hill and ace Roy Halladay.
Hill has arguably been the top second baseman in the game up to this point this season — this after coming back from a severe, career-threatening concussion. The players appropriately gave Hill the nod in peer voting, but the fans elected Boston’s Dustin Pedroia to start. Pedroia is skipping the ASG to be with his pregnany wife — good call — and Hill has been named the starter at second as a result.
Hill, who will be batting eighth for the AL, should have been the starter all along.
Halladay will be on the mound as the starter for the AL in his sixth All-Star appearance. Halladay’s has deserved to start before, but circumstances haven’t afforded him the opportunity — think Kevin Mench line drive in ’05 or Cliff Lee’s stellar season in ’08, for example. This year, Rays and AL manager Joe Maddon could’ve easily given the nod to KC’s Zack Greinke and no one would’ve complained. Instead, Maddon decided to hand the start to Doc due to the ace’s “body of work.”
In his press conference, Halladay did address the recent trade rumors swirling.
“I think there is so much that goes into it,” Halladay said. “I’m still not 100 percent sure which direction we’re going in in Toronto. If Toronto does decide to do something, it’s really going to be something that helps the organization. There’s going to be a lot of pieces; it’s going to be complicated. I think it’s going to be kind of 50-50.”