SALEM (June 12, 2017) - In conjunction with the Carolina League, the Salem Red Sox are proud to announce the rosters for the 2017 Carolina League All-Star Classic, set for Tuesday, June 20 at Haley Toyota Field at Salem Memorial Ballpark.
For the first time since 1995, the Carolina League will hold its own distinct All-Star game, pitting players from the Northern Division against players from the Southern Division. This is the first time Salem has hosted the All-Star game since 2006, when it featured players from the Carolina League against a roster of California League stars.
The Northern Division's starting infield will have several familiar faces for Salem fans, with Red Sox first baseman Josh Ockimey, second baseman Chad De La Guerra and third baseman Michael Chavis all earning starting nods alongside Wilmington Blue Rocks shortstop Nicky Lopez. In the outfield, Frederick Keys stars Austin Hays and Randolph Gassaway are set to flank Potomac Nationals phenom Victor Robles. Potomac will also have a starter behind the plate, with slugger Taylor Gushue getting the nod at catcher. Frederick shortstop Ryan Mountcastle will serve as the designated hitter. Field reserves include Lynchburg Hillcats catcher Sicnarf Loopstok, infielders Sam Haggerty (Lynchburg) and Kelvin Gutierrez (Potomac), and outfielder Anderson Miller (Wilmington).
The North has no shortage of top arms, either. Salem southpaw Dedgar Jimenez is among the starters named to the roster, alongside Lynchburg's dominating duo of Triston McKenzie and Shao-Ching Chiang and Wilmington's wipeout arms of Foster Griffin and Cristian Castillo. The bullpen is well-stocked with top talent, including relief aces Trevor Kelley (Salem), Argenis Angulo (Lynchburg), Tanner Chleborad (Frederick), Yunior Marte and Richard Lovelady (both Wilmington).
Salem manager Joe Oliver, pitching coach Paul Abbott, strength coach Gregory Bourn and athletic trainer Nick Kuchwara comprise the field staff for the Northern Division team.
The Southern Division has a strong representation from the Carolina League's two newest clubs, the Down East Wood Ducks and the Buies Creek Astros. On-base machine Myles Straw (Buies Creek) is an outfield starter alongside Carolina Mudcats star Corey Ray and Myrtle Beach Pelicans standout Daniel Spingola. The infield features starters from four teams, with Jake Gatewood (Carolina) manning first base, Bryant Flete (Myrtle Beach) at second, Winston-Salem Dash leader Danny Mendick at shortstop, and Cuban import Luis La O (Down East) at third base. Zack Collins (Winston-Salem) gets the start at catcher, while Cubs top prospect Eloy Jimenez (Myrtle Beach) will be the designated hitter. The reserves for the Southern Division are Isan Diaz (Carolina), Louis Silverio (Winston-Salem), Chuck Moorman and Josh Altman (Down East).
Myrtle Beach ace Justin Steele headlines the starters on the pitching staff, along with Dash southpaw Tanner Banks, Mudcats righties Freddy Peralta and Cody Ponce, Astros flamethrower Franklin Perez, and fellow Pelican Adbert Alzolay. The South boasts some terrific twirlers in the bullpen too, with league saves leader Nate Griep (Carolina), Ricardo Rodriguez (Down East), Yoanys Quiala and Nick Hernandez (both Buies Creek).
As 2016 Mills Cup champions, the Myrtle Beach Pelicans will furnish the coaching staff for the Southern Division. Buddy Bailey helms the team, with pitching coach Anderson Tavares, hitting coach Guillermo Martinez, and trainer Toby Williams.
The Carolina League All-Star Game returns to Haley Toyota Field at Salem Memorial Ballpark on Tuesday, June 20. As part of a celebration of 50 years of Carolina League baseball in the Roanoke Valley, the Red Sox will host a skills competition on Monday, June 19. The skills competition will take place at historic Kiwanis Field, the original home of Carolina League baseball in Salem. Tickets are on sale now at the Haley Toyota Field box office or online at SalemSox.com.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.