“I’m definitely super happy and proud of my teammates and the coaching staff, I think it’s going to be great to have everyone out there,” said Acuña through team interpreter Franco García.
“I want to take the whole team with me,” Swanson said. “I feel like every guy has played a big part in why we’ve been successful this year. Obviously Travis is phenomenal, Willie has had a kind of outbreak year for himself, Ronnie is obviously Ronnie, so it’s pretty special. And so Fried, I’ve said it before, as the guy’s elite, he’s on top. “
Acuña did not have to worry about his place in the Midsummer Classic 2022 because on June 30, the right-hander was announced as the leading voice catcher in the National League and got an automatic starting place.
Swanson was narrowly knocked out for the starting shortstop by Dodgers’ Trea Turner in the final phase of the fan vote, 52% to 48%. But Swanson will not miss the experience, since he was selected as a reserve. During his last 30 games, the 28-year-old slasher .341 / .370 / .589 with 44 hits, eight homeruns and 24 RBIs.
“It’s obviously a huge honor, something you definitely work for a lifetime,” Swanson said when he was named his first All-Star game. “I am very grateful, very blessed to be in this position.”
William Contreras joins his brother Willson at the All-Star Game, becoming the 15th set of brothers to reach the Midsummer Classic. The last brothers to make an All-Star game that year were Aaron and Bret Boone in 2003, according to the Elias Sports Bureau. With Bryce Harper injured, William Harper takes the starting spot, with his brother starting at catcher. The last brothers to start an All-Star game together were Sandy and Roberto Alomar in 1992, according to Elias Sports Bureau. William has only played 43 games this season, and shared time with d’Arnaud behind the barrel, but he has been extremely productive when he goes to the plate.
“There’s one thing I do not think we’ve ever talked about,” said Contreras about playing in the All-Star Game with his brother. “It’s a dream come true, and I think it’s something we’ve always dreamed of, but it’s crazy that it’s happening. I am very happy, I am excited and looking forward to the day. “
Contreras cuts .273 / .358 / .566 and is equal for the fifth most homers with a catcher this season (11), but every catcher over him has played in 20 or more games. Contreras has 11 homers in 143 strokes, 1 per every 13 ABs, which would be the 8th best rate in the Majors, but he does not have enough record appearances to qualify.
The Braves will have both of their catchers in Los Angeles on July 19, when d’Arnaud also got a reserve spot. The last time two catchers with at least 20 games caught for the same team came to the All-Star team was in 1957-60 and 1962, with Yogi Berra and Elston Howard of the Yankees. It happened just another time before that, in 1942 with Bill Dickey and Buddy Rosar, also from the Yankees.
d’Arnaud has been a true veteran leader for Atlanta during the team’s successful season, and he has also been a factor in the box and behind the court. During his last 15 fights he has cut .293 / .359 / .534, while he has already thrown out nine runners this season, which is the fifth most in the Majors among qualified catchers.
“What makes it special is that it is in my hometown, where I grew up learning baseball. It’s going to be cool, “said d’Arnaud.” It’s special, and I’m very grateful not only to the fans, but to my peers who think I’m a good player.
Fried will also enjoy his first All-Star selection at home at Dodger Stadium, a place he visited frequently during his childhood. The native of Southern California has achieved a record of 9-2, a draw in fifth place in victories in the Majors, with 2.52 ERA, 1.02 PISK and 100 strikeouts. He is among the candidates to be the National League’s starting pitcher.
“[Fried’s] has been one of the best pitchers of the match for the last three years, and for him to get his first All-Star selection, also for him in his hometown, is very special, said d’Arnaud.