Felix Hernandez has been elected to play for the American League in the All-Star Game July 10 at Kauffman Stadium in Kansas City. Hernandez, 26, will be making his third trip. He was also elected to the AL team in 2009 (St. Louis) and 2011 (Arizona). He is the Mariners’ lone representative.
Hernandez pitched one shutout inning in his only ASG appearance in 2009 (DNP last season). Felix becomes the sixth player in club history to be selected to at least three All-Star games, and the second pitcher.
He joins Ken Griffey Jr. (10; 1990, ’91, ’92-MVP, ’93, ’94, ’95, ’96, ’97, ’98, ’99), Ichiro (10; 2001, ’02, ’03, ’04, ’05, ’06, ’07-MVP, ’08, ’09, ’10), Edgar Martinez (7; 1992, ’95, ’96, ’97, 2000, ’01, ’03), Randy Johnson (5; 1990, ’93, ’94, ’95, ’97) and Alex Rodriguez (4; 1996, ’97, ’98, 2000) as Mariners with at least three trips to the Midsummer Classic.
Hernandez got the news by phone from pitching Gen Willis at 9 a.m. Sunday.
“I was in bed,” Hernandez said. ” I’m thinking, ‘What’s going on right now?’ He said, ‘Congratulations, you made the all-star team.’ ” I said, ‘ OK, thanks. See you in two hours.’ Went back to sleep.”
Hernandez has rallied from an early season falloff.
“I’m more comfortable now because I’m pitching pretty good,” he said. “Before I wasn’t doing good, I said I gotta do better than this. I was so mad because I wasn’t doing my job. It’s good to be back.”
With two scheduled starts before the All-Star break (Tuesday vs. Baltimore), July 8 at Oakland), Hernandez is 6-5 with a 3.09 ERA (38 ER, 110.2 IP) in 16 starts. He has recorded 114 strikeouts (9.27 K/9.0 IP), including three games with 10+ strikeouts, including a season-high 13 in his last start.
Among AL starters, Felix ranks T2nd in strikeouts (114), 3rd in K/9.0 IP (9.27), 3rd in innings pitched (110.2), T4th in games started (16), 7th in ERA (3.09) and T7th in quality starts (10).
Jamie Moyer (2003) is the last Seattle starting pitcher selected to play in an All-Star Game prior to Hernandez. Last year, the Mariners were represented by closer Brandon League.
Hernandez, who is coming off a complete-game effort Thursday against the Boston Red Sox, in which he had a season-high 13 strikeouts, has won his past two outings. He pitches Tuesday against the Baltimore Orioles.
The FOX Sports telecast will begin at 4:30 p.m,
RAMIREZ OUT, KINNEY CALLED UP Pitcher Erasmo Ramirez was placed on the 15-day disabled list with a strained flexor bundle in his right elbow. His spot was taken by relief pitcher Josh Kinney, 33, who was called up from AAA Tacoma.
Ramirez came out of the his start Friday in the third inning after throwing a first-pitch strike to Bostons Mike Aviles.
Its our best-case scenario, manager Eric Wedge said, referring to the mildness of the injury. He should be OK. Well see how he feels and and put a plan together.
Ramirez retired the first eight Red Sox batters before coming out. In two stints with the Mariners this season, Ramirez is 0-2 with a 3.82 ERA in 11 games, including four starts. He returned to Seattle from Tacoma June 13 as a starter, after going 3-2 with a 3.11 ERA (13 ER, 37.2 IP) in seven starts with the Rainiers.
Kinney was 1-0 with three saves and a 2.70 ERA (11 ER, 36.2 IP) in 27 relief appearances with Tacoma. He has limited opponents to a .268 (37×138) average, while walking 11 and striking out 38. Kinney held opponents scoreless in 21 of 27 games, including 13 of his last 15 relief appearances. Since May 13, he is 1-0 with 2 saves and a 1.80 ERA (4 ER, 20.0 IP).
To make room on the 40-man roster for Kinney, the Mariners designated for assignment catcher Adam Moore. He has had two stints on the disabled list this season, most recently after having his second surgery in two years to repair a medial meniscus tear in his right knee (April 17-June 8).
In 24 games this season with Tacoma, Moore, 28, batted .209 (18×86) with 10 runs scored, 5 doubles, 3 home runs and 11 RBI. He started the year on the major league disabled list recovering from a fracture in the third metacarpal in his right wrist suffered during spring training. Moore was limited to two games with Seattle last season after suffering a torn medial meniscus in his right knee that required surgery.
Moore was selected in the sixth round of the 2006 draft. He hit .197 (46×234) with 16 runs scored, 8 doubles, 5 home runs and 17 RBI in 68 games with Seattle over the last three seasons.