As a result of the Los Angeles Dodgers advancing to the World Series, Dave Roberts will once again manage the National League roster in the 2019 MLB All-Star Game.
Five Dodgers players are representing the organization in the exhibition contest, including Cody Bellinger, Walker Buehler, Clayton Kershaw, Max Muncy and Hyun-Jin Ryu.
Ryu will start for the NL and is expected to pitch only the first inning, while Bellinger, who will patrol right field, was penciled into the cleanup spot in the lineup.
Depending on how things shape up score-wise, the 90th Midsummer Classic could be in line to make some history. If the game reaches extra innings, a runner will begin on second base for each team.
Roberts, mindful of the pitching changes he will need to make, isn’t a fan of the new rule and hopes it doesn’t find its way to regular season games. “I think the main thing for Alex and I is worrying about making sure we have enough pitching,” Roberts said.
“There’s a balance between trying to get the guys that want to pitch, whether it’s their first All-Star Game, so you try to appreciate them, their families, their fan bases, and also running out of pitching.
“So I think to that question, I’d rather not see it in play tomorrow. I’d rather see nine innings of baseball. And going forward as far as — I don’t know, probably the wrong thing to say, but I kind of like it the way it is right now.”
Boston Red Sox manager Alex Cora, who will manage the American League is in agreement with Roberts and prefers the current extra-inning format. “You know, hopefully it’s a nine-inning game,” Cora said.
“I’ve seen the rule play before internationally. And it’s kind of like the coolest, more tougher thing ever in baseball, to be honest with you.
“With one pitch it changes the game. It is what it is. I don’t know, I’m with DR, I like the way the game is played now. And hopefully it stays that way.”
The new extra inning format for upcoming All-Star Games was implemented this past March as part of a plethora of rule changes that have made their way to MLB.
Among others included a change in the way All-Star Game voting was conducted, where an Election Day was added to determine starters for both the AL and NL.