All-Star Lineups Announced, Zobrist Batting Leadoff for NL

The All-Star lineups were announced recently and NL manager Terry Collins has Ben Zobrist leading things off for the NL. Kris Bryant will be batting third, while Anthony Rizzo is sixth and Addison Russell ninth. I know that these things are always stacked, but having Rizzo that far down in the order is nuts. Not that Collins should be chastised for putting him there, just that having the NL leader in wOBA (.419) and wRC+ (164) hitting in the six-hole is something else.

Of course, CarGo’s batting eighth, so there you go.

Here’s the full lineup:

1. Ben Zobrist, 2B
2. Bryce Harper, RF
3. Kris Bryant, 3B
4. Wil Myers, DH
5. Buster Posey, C
6. Anthony Rizzo, 1B
7. Marcell Ozuna, CF
8. Carlos Gonzalez, LF
9. Addison Russell, SS

I can’t imagine Russell being long for the game, what with the other shortstops at Collins’ disposal. Oh well, I’m sure it’ll be no less of a trip for the kid.

Collins also announced that Johnny Cueto will be starting for the NL team, though he declined to lay out a plan for the next few innings. AL manager Ned Yost, on the other hand, has already set forth the quintet of Chris Sale, Corey Kluber, Cole Hamels, Aaron Sanchez, and Jose Quintana. Lots of Chicago flavor already, and you know Jake Arrieta and Jon Lester will get their cracks at an AL lineup that looks like this:

1. Jose Altuve, 2B
2. Mike Trout, CF
3. Manny Machado, 3B
4. David Ortiz, DH
5. Xander Bogaerts, SS
6. Eric Hosmer, 1B
7. Mookie Betts, RF
8. Salvador Perez, C
9. Jackie Bradley Jr., LF

Really good mix of youth and experience on both squads, including the two guys most widely regarded as the best players in the game batting second for their respective teams. And if he’s not careful, Kris Bryant is going to find himself in that same conversation. As of the break, his 5.0 WAR leads the NL and is 3rd in the game behind Trout (5.5) and Josh Donaldson (5.4).

Everyone listed above will likely be cycled out after a couple innings or AB’s, but I still enjoy all the pomp and circumstance of the introductions and the overall concept of the All-Star Game. I do wish they’d do away with the home-field advantage thing, though I also think the Cubs will be fine no matter which league prevails. Actually, it might even be better if the AL wins.

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