Peavy, Hoffman selected as All-Stars
Staff ace, star closer named by peers to National League team
LOS ANGELES -- If there was any lingering disappointment in being denied his bid for his 10th victory of the season, Jake Peavy certainly had ample reason to get excited on Sunday afternoon.
Peavy and teammate Trevor Hoffman were selected to play in the 78th Major League Baseball All-Star Game, which will be held on July 10 at AT&T Park in San Francisco.
It will be the second All-Star Game appearance for Peavy, who also appeared in the 2005 All-Star Game in Comerica Park in Detroit. For Hoffman, it will be his sixth All-Star Game appearance, the last coming in 2006.
"In my mind, in our minds, as the Padres organization, they're very deserving," manager Bud Black said.
Both were named to the National League squad by their peers, with Peavy the leading vote-getter among NL pitchers. That could well mean he'll start the game, though that will be up to team manager Tony La Russa.
The 2003 season marked the introduction of the Player Ballot to the All-Star selection process. Each league's players, managers and coaches elect eight position players and eight pitchers from their league. Catchers and infielders who finish in the top two at their position on the Player Ballot, and outfielders among the top six, are assured of making the All-Star Team. In instances where the winners of the Player Ballot are also fan-elected starters, the player with the next highest amount of votes on the Player Ballot makes the All-Star Team. Eight pitchers - five starters and three relievers - become All-Stars through the Player Ballot. The manager of each World Series team from the prior season - in this year's case, Detroit's Jim Leyland and St. Louis' Tony La Russa - then fills the remaining slots on their respective teams, ensuring that one player from all 30 clubs is named to the All-Star Game.
The 78th Major League Baseball All-Star Game will be televised nationally by FOX Sports, in Canada by Rogers Sportsnet and Sportsnet HD, and around the world by Major League Baseball International, with pregame ceremonies beginning at 5 p.m. PT.
ESPN Radio will provide exclusive national radio coverage, with MLB.com providing extensive online coverage. XM will provide satellite radio play-by-play coverage of the XM All-Star Futures Game.
Peavy, 9-2 with a 2.09 ERA in 16 starts this season, is on pace to eclipse his career high for single-season victories (15, recorded in 2004). He leads the National League in strikeouts (119) and is second in the league in ERA.
He certainly pitched well enough for his 10th victory of the season on Saturday, but as did Dodgers starting pitcher Brad Penny -- who was also selected to the All-Star team -- he left the game with a no-decision after seven strong innings.
In that game, Peavy allowed a solo home run to Nomar Garciaparra, yielding but five hits over seven innings with one walk and six strikeouts. The home run was the second he has allowed all season and just his first in his last 84 1/3 innings.
Peavy's impressive credentials in 2007 and his consistency made him an easy pick for the All-Star Game, and he's excited about participating again.
"As a kid, you have aspirations and dreams to be a player in the Major Leagues, then you get to be a Major League All-Star, its special," Peavy said. "The first time it happened, it was special. I had a lot of family and friends there to enjoy it with me."
As for Hoffman, he's been down this road before, though when he was asked if this one is more special than his previous five appearances, he smiled and said, "I use this line a lot -- it's like comparing kids. You can't like one more than the other."
Hoffman -- named to the All-Star team from 1998 to 2000, and in 2002 and 2006 -- is the Major League's career saves leader (505), having passed Lee Smith last September. And on June 6, against the Dodgers, he reached another milestone when he notched career save No. 500.
"I'm excited to have an opportunity to represent the National League," Hoffman said. "My selection is representative of a very strong bullpen. The guys that are here have done a tremendous job all year long and are the reason I'm going to San Francisco."
Hoffman is 2-3 with 23 saves this season, good enough for third in the National League behind Arizona's Jose Valverde (26) and Milwaukee's Francisco Cordero (27).
Hoffman has saved 19 consecutive games and allowed just one earned run since blowing a save opportunity against the Dodgers on April 27. He's been the rock at the back end of what is considered baseball's best bullpen.
The guy at the top of the staff isn't too shabby, either.
Peavy has been steady all season. He hasn't allowed more than four runs in any of his 16 starts. Earlier this season, he struck out 16 in a game against Arizona, though he's been more economical with his pitches in the last two months.
"He's obviously, if not the best, one of the best in the game," said Red Sox manager Terry Francona. The Red Sox handed Peavy his last loss, on June 24.
Peavy will make one more start before making his way to San Francisco, where he'll be reunited in the National League dugout with former manager and current Giants skipper Bruce Bochy, who is on La Russa's staff.
"It will be extra special this time, going up and being reunited with 'Boch' and to be in the same dugout," he said. "That will be cool. Now that I've done it once, you go into it wanting to enjoy the experience, just take it in and see some good friends."
Corey Brock is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.