Kenley Jansen, Corey Seager talk about their first All-Star selection
Three Dodgers were named to the National League All-Star team, and the two who are expected to play discussed the honor before Tuesday’s game against the Baltimore Orioles.
Shortstop Corey Seager and closer Kenley Jansen were selected for the team in a vote by players and are set to be active for the NL at Petco Park in San Diego on July 12. It will be the first All-Star appearance for each. Also selected was three-time Cy Young Award winner Clayton Kershaw, who is currently on the 15-day disabled list with a herniated disk and will not participate.
Seager said Dodgers Manager Dave Roberts and Andrew Friedman, the team’s president of baseball operations, broke the news to him in Roberts’ Dodger Stadium office.
“It’s awesome, it’s really cool. Dave called me in his office, Andrew was in there, a lot of excitement, a lot of joy,” said Seager, who was selected as a reserve. “. . . I didn’t know how to react, it was awesome. It was a really cool thing.”
Seager reacted by keeping quiet. He said he avoided teammates in the clubhouse and was shy about telling anyone at first. But his bat has been the loudest in the Dodgers’ lineup of late, as he carries a 17-game hitting streak, longest in the National League this year, into Tuesday’s game. He is hitting .305 with 17 home runs and 41 runs batted in, both team highs.
Still, the 22-year-old insisted he wouldn’t have been disappointed if he hadn’t been selected in his first full season. The Chicago Cubs’ Addison Russell will start for the National League at shortstop.
“There’s a lot of people that deserve it, but no, that would have never crossed my mind. It’s just really cool to be selected,” Seager said. “It’s awesome that I’m going, but there’s definitely people that deserve to go.”
Jansen knew his 25 saves and 1.30 earned-run average put him in good position to make the team, but he said he didn’t get his hopes up. In previous years, he thought his All-Star chances were partly hurt by relievers who were automatically selected as the only player for their team. So this year he started making All-Star break plans with his family, and considered fishing near his house or taking the kids to Disneyland.
Then he found out Tuesday he’d be busy next week.
“I know I’m having a career good season, yeah, the last week it was getting in my mind and I got anxious if I’m going to make it or not,” Jansen said. “And now finally they announced me being there, and it’s a blessing.”
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