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Larry Stone gives his take on a wide array of baseball issues and weighs in about the Mariners, too.

July 11, 2011 at 10:33 AM

Ron Washington says Pineda and League will pitch in All-Star Game


I just got out of the press conference in which All-Star managers Ron Washington and Bruce Bochy named their starting lineups, including Jered Weaver of the Angels and Roy Halladay of the Phillies as the starting pitchers (the managers are pictured above after the press conference, with Weaver off to the right).

I caught up with Washington after the press conference to ask him about his plans for the Mariners’ two participants, Michael Pineda and Brandon League. Washington had said earlier that he talked to the managers and pitching coaches of each pitcher on the squad to get their guidelines for using that pitcher, and he planned to follow them to a tee. “I want to return these guys just as healthy as they came here,” he said.

Washington told me the Mariners told him they are OK with Pineda pitching, and he is indeed in the plans to appear in the game.

“Oh, he will appear,” Washington said. “He’s in the pecking order. He’s got one inning, and not more than 30 pitches. Hopefully, his one inning he can get out of it with less than 30 pitches.”

I asked him next about League, and Washington assured me he’ll see action, too — but is not likely to close the game.

“Brandon’s going to get his inning in, because he was chosen by the fans and the players,” Washington said. “He’ll be towards the end of the ballgame.”

Washington obviously misspoke when he mentioned fans, because they don’t have a say in pitching choices, but the reference was to the players ballot, which had League ranked highly. The American League will be without its automatic choice to close the game for the past decade, Mariano Rivera, who pulled out because of injury. Washington said he plans to have Detroit’s Jose Valverde do the closing.

“There’s a lot of youth in the All-Star game this year, first timers,” he said. “If it’s a close ballgame, and I have to close it down, I’m more than certain I’m going to give the ball to Valverde.”

Here are the starting lineups:

American League

Curtis Granderson, Yankees, CF

Asdrubal Cabrera, Indians, SS

Adrian Gonzalez, Red Sox, 1B

Jose Bautista, Blue Jays, RF

Josh Hamilton, Rangers, LF

Adrian Beltre, Rangers, 3B

David Ortiz, Red Sox, DH

Robinson Cano, Yankees, 2B

Alex Avila, TIgers, C

Jered Weaver, Angels, RHP

National League

Rickie Weeks, Brewers, 2B

Carlos Beltran, Mets, DH

Matt Kemp, Dodgers, CF

Prince Fielder, Brewers 1B

Brian McCann, Braves, C

Lance Berkman, Cardinals, RF

Matt Holliday, Cardinals LF

Troy Tulowitzki, Rockies, SS

Scott Rolen, Reds, 3B

Roy Halladay, Phillies, RHP



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