Make us your home page

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Rays may deserve multiple All-Stars, but odds likely against it

All-Star teams are named two weeks from today, and there's a fair amount of conversation in the Rays' clubhouse and offices about their candidates, with the leading choices C Dioner Navarro, ace Scott Kazmir and — though less likely, despite manager Joe Maddon's push — middle reliever J.P. Howell. (And with B.J. Upton, Troy Percival and Carl Crawford probably after that.)

But there's no debate that for the first time since 1999 (and second time ever), they deserve multiple selections.

"We definitely should have more than one," said Crawford, a two-time star. "You can't have a team that's playing like we're playing and only have one All-Star. That wouldn't make any sense. … That's the excuse they've always had is that we weren't winning, and now they can't say that any more."

"The way we're playing," Upton said, "there's got to be more than one All-Star on this team."

"Definitely," Kazmir said. "With what we've done, and the record we have, having one guy representing would not be right."

Sounds good, but …

The nine starters are voted by fans in stadiums and online, which means no Rays have a chance. Then nine players and eight pitchers are elected in balloting by players, coaches and managers. Five more are chosen by the All-Star manager "in conjunction with" MLB (and the 32nd chosen in later online voting).

The peer voting offers some hope — that's how Crawford got in during 2004 — because it supplements the fans' choices; if the players' choice is voted in by the fans as well, the players' second-place finisher goes. But neither Navarro nor Howell is likely to have enough name recognition to be voted in. Kazmir does but missed the first five weeks.

That leaves the five selected spots, which have to be used first to make sure all teams are represented (as has often been the case with the Rays). And then there's this problem: The manager doing the final picking is Boston's Terry Francona, who isn't exactly the biggest Rays fan these days given the June 5 brawl.

"Francona, huh?" Crawford said. "So who knows …"

Rays may deserve multiple All-Stars, but odds likely against it 06/21/08 [Last modified: Monday, June 23, 2008 9:20am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Sign up for the daily News at Noon email newsletter


    The Tampa Bay Times has launched a daily newsletter called News at Noon. It'll be the perfect way to catch up with the latest breaking news and our top stories right in your inbox each weekday.

  2. Video shows ex-Bucs DT Brian Price going through glass door


    More and more stories are coming forward of former NFL players and the sad, stunning effects of CTE after their football careers, and a new video shows former Bucs defensive tackle Brian Price running …

    Former Bucs defensive tackle Brian Price, shown arriving at One Buc Place for training camp in the 2012 preseason, is shown in a video from a Michigan TV station running through the glass door of an auto parts store.
  3. HomeTeam 100: Players 11-20


     Rising senior DE/TE Judge Culpepper (right) tackles OL Bryce Love during practice at Plant High School in Tampa, on Tuesday May 2, 2017.
  4. Rays get relief help, acquire LHP Dan Jennings from White Sox


    The Rays got the relief help they were looking for, acquiring LHP Dan Jennings from the White Sox for prospect 1B Casey Gillaspie.

    Jennings, 30, is 3-1, 3.45 in 48 games this season for the White Sox, and is tough on lefty hitters, holding them a .169 average and .497 OPS. He was better last season, posting a …

    Dan Jennings is 3-1, 3.45 in 48 games this season for the White Sox.
  5. Rays series preview: Who are the Yankees?


    To make the playoffs for the first time since 2013, the Rays will have to beat a lot of other contenders. Their eight-game road trip pits them against two of the AL's strongest teams, starting with the Yankees. Here's the information you need to know about Baltimore before the action kicks off.


    As outfielder Aaron Judge, right, has struggled in the second half, shortstop Didi Gregorius, middle, has picked up the slack.