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Saunders looking forward to coming home


Saunders looking forward to coming home

Orioles fans who were hoping to get a look at Joe Saunders will have to wait until at least Wednesday.Saunders was acquired on Sunday from Arizona along with cash considerations in exchange for Matt Lindstrom and a player to be named later.After Sundays rainout, the Orioles decided that Wei-Yin Chen, Mondays original starter, would stay on schedule, and that Sundays starter, Chris Tillman, would slide to Tuesday. Saunders, whos from Springfield, Va., presumably would pitch on Wednesday.The 31-year-old left-hander, who is expected to report on Monday, is making 6 million this season and will be a free agent next winter.The Orioles discussed Saunders last winter, but he signed a one-year contract with the Diamondbacks.I was excited to get traded to a contending team, Saunders told the Arizona Republic.Theyre in the hunt right now, so its going to be exciting. My family is from there, so its going to be a trip home for me.The Diamondbacks started play Sunday in third place in the NL West, seven games out of first and had recently gone to a six-man rotation.As soon as we went to a six-man rotation, I pretty much figured out I had a few more days here. Its definitely easier going home to put on a new jersey. It doesnt really come from left field.Saunders, who went to many Orioles games growing up said hes friendly with Mark Reynolds, J.J. Hardy and Adam Jones.I pitched against Adam Jones pretty much my whole life, Saunders said.NOTES:-The Orioles play a four-game series with the Chicago White Sox. Chen (12-7, 3.87) pitches against Francisco Liriano (5-10, 5.12) on Monday night. Tillman (6-2, 3.71) and Chris Sale (15-4, 2.63) are scheduled for Tuesday. Saunders and Zach Britton are the likely starters on Wednesday and Thursday against Jake Peavy (9-9, 3.09) and Jose Quintana (5-2, 2.86). Liriano, Sale and Quintana are all left-handers. The Orioles won three of four in Chicago in mid-April. -Manager Buck Showalter confirmed that Jason Hammel would start at Frederick on Saturday in his rehab start.-The Orioles were attempting to get Wilson Betemit out of Florida on Sunday to avoid Hurricane Isaac. He will continue his rehab in Maryland.-Sundays rainout was the second of the season.-Saunders has a 5-0 record against the Orioles, and is 3-0 with a 4.58 ERA in three starts at Oriole Park.

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American League All-Star Game Roster Projection: AL will be loaded once again

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American League All-Star Game Roster Projection: AL will be loaded once again

The 2018 Major League All-Star Game is less than a month away. Fan votes are well underway and early frontrunners are close to locking their position in the Midsummer Classic.

Yesterday, we projected how the National League roster will play out. Today it is time to look at the American League roster projection.

For five straight seasons, the AL has had the upper hand in the MLB All-Star Game. In 2018, it does not appear that will change as the American League roster will be loaded from top to bottom.

As a reminder, here is how the process shakes out, first with the fan vote, players’ ballots, and the MLB Commissioner’s Office:

  • Fan vote: nine position players in AL (DH)/ eight in NL; plus final vote for each league
  • Player’s ballots: next 17 players in AL/ 16 players in NL; (five starting pitchers, three relievers must be chosen)
  • MLB Commissioner’s Office: five AL players (four pitchers, one position player) and seven NL players (four pitchers, three position players)

One player from each team must make the initial roster (before injury withdraws, etc.). Below is how it looks the American League roster will play out, considering the latest fan vote returns:

American League All-Star Roster Projection:

C – Wilson Ramos, Rays (Fan Vote), Gary Sánchez, Yankees (Player Ballot)
1B – José Abreu, White Sox (Fan Vote), Joey Gallo, Rangers (Player Ballot)
2B – Jose Altuve, Astros (Fan Vote), Jed Lowrie, Athletics (Player Ballot)
3B – José Ramírez, Indians (Fan Vote), Yangervis Solarte, Blue Jays (Player Ballot), Mike Moustakas, Royals (Commissioner’s Office)
SS – Manny Machado, Orioles (Fan Vote), Jean Segura, Mariners (Player Ballot),
OF – Mookie Betts, Red Sox (Fan Vote), Mike Trout, Angels (Fan Vote), Aaron Judge, Yankees (Fan Vote), Michael Brantley, Indians (Player Ballot), Eddie Rosario, Twins (Player Ballot), Giancarlo Stanton, Yankees (Player Ballot),
DH – J.D. Martinez, Red Sox (Fan Vote), Shohei Ohtani, Angels (Player Ballot)

SP – Justin Verlander, Astros (Player Ballot), Luis Severino, Yankees (Player Ballot), Corey Kluber, Indians (Player Ballot), Chris Sale, Red Sox (Player Ballot), Gerrit Cole, Astros (Player Ballot), Blake Snell, Tampa Bay (Commissioner’s Office)

RP – Edwin Díaz, Mariners (Player Ballot), Craig Kimbrel, Red Sox (Player Ballot), Aroldis Chapman, Yankees (Player Ballot), Joe Jiménez, Tigers (Commissioner’s Office), Delin Betances, Yankees (Commissioner’s Office), Chris Devenski, Astros (Commissioner’s Office)

Manager: Jeff Luhnow, Astros

Based on this projection, the New York Yankees will have the most representatives with six. The Houston Astros and Boston Red Sox will both have four.

Ensuring no snubs, there will be five players selected for the final fan vote to get one more All-Star into the game for a total of 32 for the American League. As you can see, no matter how the AL roster plays out, it will be a dominant team once again as they look for six straight All-Star wins.

Four of those five wins were inside a National League stadium and that will not change as the Washington Nationals will host this season.


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2018 MLB All-Star Game voting update: Manny Machado maintains big lead among A.L. shortstops

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2018 MLB All-Star Game voting update: Manny Machado maintains big lead among A.L. shortstops

Baltimore Orioles’ Manny Machado took an even larger lead in the latest update for 2018 MLB All-Star Game voting.

The superstar shortstop maintained his position at the top of American League shortstops in the second round of All-Star voting updates, released Tuesday morning. 

After the first ballot was released, Machado led the shortstops category by over 100,00 votes.

This week, he now holds north of a 200,000-vote lead over last year’s American League starter, Carlos Correa.

The Astros’ Correa jumped from fourth to second this past week while the Indians’ Francisco Lindor dropped to third.  

Machado now has 671,133 votes, seventh among all American League players. For the second straight week, Machado remained the only Orioles player on the list.

Through 69 games in 2018, Machado is batting .310 with 18 home runs, 15 doubles and 53 RBIs. He is posting his best OPS (.945) and on-base percentage (.377) in his career, a bright spot for the O’s, who sit dead last in MLB with a 20-50 record.

The All-Star voting will be open until July 5 at 11:59 p.m. ET and fans can vote five times every 24 hours.

The next AL voting update will be announced June 26.