MLB All-Star Game

2020 MLB season: All-Star game canceled, Dodgers awarded 2022 game

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USA TODAY

2020 MLB season: All-Star game canceled, Dodgers awarded 2022 game

Major League Baseball announced Friday they've canceled the 2020 All Star Game, which was scheduled for July 14 at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles.

The Braves are scheduled to host the 2021 Midsummer Classic, so MLB awarded the Dodgers the 2022 game.

"Based on the health circumstances created by the COVID-19 pandemic that are beyond MLB’s control along with governmental directives prohibiting large gatherings, the league determined it is unable to conduct the All-Star Game and its week of surrounding fan activities this year," MLB said in a statement.

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“Once it became clear we were unable to hold this year’s All-Star festivities, we wanted to award the Dodgers with the next available All-Star Game, which is 2022,” MLB commissioner Rob Manfred said in a statement.  “I want to thank the Dodgers organization and the City of Los Angeles for being collaborative partners in the early stages of All-Star preparation and for being patient and understanding in navigating the uncertainty created by the pandemic.  

"The 2022 All-Star celebration promises to be a memorable one with events throughout the city and at picturesque Dodger Stadium.”

California has seen a 92 percent increase in COVID-19 cases this week compared to two weeks ago.

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A couple wishes fulfilled for White Sox at All-Star Game

A couple wishes fulfilled for White Sox at All-Star Game

CLEVELAND — Before Tuesday night's All-Star Game, the White Sox first timers were asked what they wanted to do in this one.

Who did Lucas Giolito want to strike out?

"The best of the best," Giolito said. "(Christian) Yelich, (Cody) Bellinger, those types of guys. That'd be cool to go out and strike out a guy that could go on and win MVP this year."

Who did James McCann want to catch? Besides Giolito, of course.

"The one guy that really sticks out is (Aroldis) Chapman," McCann said. "I've had to face him. I've had to see 102 coming at me. I think it'd be fun to see 102 coming at me as a catcher."

Well, the baseball gods granted those wishes in the Midsummer Classic.

Giolito made his appearance in the fourth inning. He started things with a four-pitch walk to Freddie Freeman but followed it up with a strikeout — of Bellinger. The next two batters each grounded out, giving Giolito a scoreless inning in his first All-Star Game.

Coincidentally, the inning mirrored one of the biggest talking points surrounding Giolito's incredible transformation this season. He got into early trouble, but instead of letting things unravel, he got back in the zone and retired the next three batters he faced.

"Felt good," Giolito said of striking out Bellinger. "He's in the running for MVP, and I was able to put him away right there.

"You have to have that (confidence). If you want to compete at this level and stay here for a long time, you have to have the confidence that you're better than everybody else every time you're pitching. That's what I take into my games, whether it's a start against whoever during the regular season or an All-Star Game, one inning.

"For me, that's what it's all about."

Of course, this was on the biggest stage Giolito's ever pitched in, so it's no surprise that there were some jitters.

"He did a good job," Jose Abreu said through team interpreter Billy Russo. "After that inning, we were talking in the dugout, and he said that during the first batter he was really anxious and nervous. And I told him, 'Hey, that's normal. But you settled down after, and that was good.' It was a fun moment for him and for me, too."

Then there's McCann, who got his wish to catch the flame-throwing closer from the New York Yankees. The first question: How's your hand?

"It's good," McCann said. "He threw the ball extremely well.

"It's easier to catch than it is to hit. There's no doubt about that."

Catching Chapman, though, might not have even been the highlight of his night. He smoked a line-drive single for a hit in his only trip to the plate. And he also made a diving catch in foul territory, hanging onto a pop up to end an eighth-inning rally by the National League.

"It was fun. I think the smile that came across my face tells it all.

"Being around the best players and stepping on the same field as them, it's a dream come true."

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Jose Abreu's desire to stay with White Sox: 'I don't want to miss what is coming, and I'm going to be here'

Jose Abreu's desire to stay with White Sox: 'I don't want to miss what is coming, and I'm going to be here'

CLEVELAND — I’m not sure how much more evidence anyone needs to know that Jose Abreu wants to remain with the White Sox past the 2019 season.

But Abreu’s providing more anyway.

For the third time in less than a week, Abreu has voiced his unwavering intent to be a part of the White Sox for the foreseeable future, even though his current contract is up at the end of this season and he’s slated to hit the free-agent market.

Speaking Tuesday from the American League clubhouse at the All-Star Game, Abreu laid it all out there once more, just like he did a day prior, giddy over what the White Sox are building on the South Side and the thought of being a part of it.

“That tells you how good we are right now and how good we can be,” he said through team interpreter Billy Russo, asked what it meant to have teammates joining him at the Midsummer Classic after being the lone White Sox representative a year ago. “And we’re going to be very, very good.

“That’s why I’m telling you guys that if the White Sox don’t sign me, I’m going to sign here anyway. I’m going to sign myself here. I’m going to be here, believe me. I’m going to be here.

“I don’t want to miss this, I don’t want to miss what is coming, and I’m going to be here.”

It’s an obvious example of how much he enjoys being a part of this organization, despite the fact that he’s never played for a White Sox team that finished the season with a winning record. As he’s been tasked with — and willingly adopted — the role of acting as a mentor to guys like Yoan Moncada and Eloy Jimenez, who are expected to be the stars of future championship teams, he’s had a front-row seat to all the talent Rick Hahn’s front office has acquired since starting this rebuilding process.

He knows what’s coming.

After blasting a walk-off home run in a picture-perfect day for the rebuild — the same day Dylan Cease won in his major league debut — he said he saw the White Sox building “something very big” and that “I don’t want to leave here.”

Monday, during All-Star media responsibilities in Cleveland, he said: “I think my desire to stay with this team is getting bigger every day, after every game. We are good, and we’re going to be very, very good. For me, there’s no secret. I want to be here.”

So, yeah, it’s been pretty darn obvious what Abreu’s ideal outcome is: staying in a White Sox uniform. And he’s going to do it himself if he has to.

That doesn’t sound like it will be necessary, though. The White Sox have raved about him as much as he’s raved about them, and it’s been no secret that they would like him to be a part of their future, too.

“We, obviously, are biased,” general manager Rick Hahn said last week. “We get the benefit of seeing what he does in the clubhouse. He is a modest and humble producer year in and year out and a great asset to us, both on the field and off.

“He helps teach (young players) professionalism and helps teach them commitment and day-in, day-out commitment to trying to win a championship. He is relentless in his pursuit of making himself the best, and he takes those young guys under his wing and sort of shows them the path.

“I don’t think he takes for granted a single day in the big leagues and takes an extreme amount of pride in wearing a White Sox uniform, and he models that for the young players in this organization.”

Hahn went on to call Abreu a model player, and after hearing what his All-Star teammates, Lucas Giolito and James McCann, said Monday about his impact, it’s almost impossible to envision the good times coming for this franchise and Abreu not being a part of them.

It almost seems like the White Sox feel about Abreu the same way they’ve felt about players who now have their numbers retired and have statues in the outfield at Guaranteed Rate Field.

Abreu might be providing more evidence than is necessary about how he’d like things to shake out. But the feeling appears to be mutual.

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