Major League Baseball implemented a new voting process for the 2019 All-Star Game, and the system treated the Yankees well. Two Bombers will head to Cleveland as starters for the Midsummer Classic.
Gary Sanchez won his place as the starting catcher, besting James McCann of the White Sox and Robinson Chirinos of the Astros. After a down year in 2018, Sanchez reestablished himself as the game’s most dominant catcher. The 26-year-old has hit .266/.332/.607 with 23 home runs (139 wRC+) on the season today. Even more impressive? He missed a few weeks on the injured list with a calf strain and still has that home run total. This marks his second trip to the All-Star Game, having made the team in 2017.
DJ LeMahieu also secured a starting spot on the team; he will play second base for the American League. The 30-year-old has been a revelation for the Yankees, hitting .336/.385/.522 with 12 home runs (139 wRC+) and playing excellent defense. Among position players in the AL, LeMahieu ranks fifth in WAR with a 3.2 fWAR to his name. He bested Tommy La Stella of the Angels and Jose Altuve of the Astros to lock up his third All-Star bid.
Aaron Judge made a last-minute push in the fan voting, but came up just short. The outfielder has hit .286/.394/.505. with six home runs in limited time. An oblique injury sidelined the 27-year-old for two months. The fact he made it this far is a testament to his popularity among fans.
Lule Voit, Gleyber Torres, and Gio Urshela all proved finalists for their positions, but also fell short on the fan vote. This does not mean that they won’t make the squad entirely. They could still head to Cleveland as a reserve. ESPN will air the pitchers and reserves announcements on Sunday evening.
Congratulations to Sanchez and LeMahieu! Stick around as Pinstripe Alley will have All-Star coverage over the next week and change.