The International League today announced the members of its 2017 All-Star Team. The squad of thirty standouts will suit up against the Pacific Coast League's best to defend the IL's four-game winning streak at the Triple-A All- Star Game. The 30th annual gathering of the classification's top stars will be played, for the first time, at historic Cheney Stadium in Tacoma, Washington on Wednesday, July 12 and will be broadcast live on MLB Network, American Forces Network, MiLB.TV, and the Triple-A All-Star Game Radio Network beginning at 9:00 p.m. ET.
The 2017 International League All-Star squad is made up of 13 elected players who have received the most votes from ballots submitted by club's field managers and general managers (1/3), members of the media (1/3), and online fan voting (1/3). The elected players are joined by 17 additional All-Stars selected by the International League office. Each of the IL's fourteen clubs will be represented in Tacoma.
Triple-A's winningest club, Lehigh Valley, leads the way for the IL with five All-Stars including the overall leader in fan voting, first baseman Rhys Hoskins. Hoskins was elected to the squad alongside outfielder Dylan Cozens, starting pitcher Tom Eshelman, and reliever Pedro Beato, while catcher Jorge Alfaro was selected to the event. Just one other IL team can boast about multiple elected All-Stars. Durham currently enjoys the largest advantage of any division leader, pacing the South by 8.5 games, and the Bulls will be represented in Tacoma by elected catcher Mike Marjama and shortstop Willy Adames in addition to selected infielder Patrick Leonard and pitcher Andrew Kittredge, a Spokane native and former member of the host Rainiers.
Charlotte's Yoan Moncada, currently ranked by MLB.com as the top overall prospect in baseball, has been elected as the All-Star second baseman. He'll be joined in the infield by third baseman Jason Leblebijian of Buffalo. The IL's other elected starters include outfielders Dustin Fowler of Scranton/Wilkes-Barre and Zack Granite of Rochester, the circuit's top hitter, plus designated hitter Richie Shaffer of Columbus, starting pitcher Steven Brault of Indianapolis, and reliever Arcenio Leon of Toledo. Norfolk second baseman Johnny Giavotella is the only IL All-Star who will be making his second appearance in Triple-A Baseball's midsummer classic, having played in the 2011 event while with Omaha.
The International League has been victorious in seven of the past eight Triple-A All-Star Games, including the last four in a row. The IL owns a 12-7 advantage in the nineteen years since the event changed to the current International League vs. Pacific Coast League format. The winning League this season will once again earn the right to have its champion play as the "home team" at the Gildan Triple-A National Championship Game which will take place Tuesday, September 19 at PNC Field in Moosic, Pennsylvania.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.