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Futures Game 2007

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Huntsville Times:


New Stars shortstop Alcides Escobar was taking batting practice before a game against the Smokies this week when he found out some exciting news: He'd be participating in the XM Satellite All-Star Futures game July 8 in San Francisco as part of the MLB All-Star weekend festivities.


Escobar will represent the World Team against the United States, much like Brewers pitcher and former Star Yovani Gallardo did last year. Also, ex-Huntsville and current Milwaukee third baseman Ryan Braun participated last season.


"I'm very, very happy," Escobar said. "I'm playing hard for the rest of the season, and when September comes, who knows? You may go to the big leagues. I'm working every day."


The 20-year-old earned a call-up from Brevard County by hitting .325 with 25 RBIs and eight doubles. Heading into Saturday, he was hitting .235 for the Stars with four RBIs and two steals in 17 at-bats after replacing Yohannis Perez, who was sent down at the end of the first half.


"He deserves it," Stars manager Don Money said of Escobar. "He's playing solid defense and helping us at the plate now. He just needs more time."


Perez needs some extra time, too. He showed strong defense but struggled at the plate, batting .195 with 55 strikeouts in 56 games with the Stars. The defector from Cuba hadn't played for two seasons and the layoff was obvious offensively as struggled making contact and pulling the ball.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Interesting note from Jim Callis at BA:




The Futures Game obviously has showcased several future major league stars. But how many exactly have gone on to the major league All-Star Game? Three 2005 Futures Gamers already have done so: Francisco Liriano, Russell Martin and Justin Verlander.


Mark L. Peel

Arlington Heights, Ill.


One-third of the 66 players selected for the 2007 All-Star Game were former Futures Gamers. Josh Beckett, Prince Fielder, J. J. Hardy, Orlando Hudson, Martin, Justin Morneau, Jose Valverde and Verlander all made their first midsummer classic appearance. Fourteen repeat all-stars had Futures Game experience: Miguel Cabrera, Francisco Cordero, Carl Crawford, Victor Martinez, Brad Penny, Jose Reyes, Alex Rios, Francisco Rodriguez, C.C. Sabathia, Ben Sheets, Grady Sizemore, Alfonso Soriano, Chase Utley and David Wright.


Though the Futures Game started only in 1999, it already has spawned 39 big league all-stars. The 17 others are: Lance Berkman, Hank Blalock, Mark Buehrle, Robinson Cano, Adam Dunn, Rafael Furcal, Marcus Giles, Ryan Howard, Liriano, Felipe Lopez, Jose Lopez, Joe Mauer, Mark Mulder, Aramis Ramirez, B.J. Ryan, Vernon Wells and Barry Zito.


Soriano (1999), Reyes (2002) and Sizemore (2003) all were named MVP of past Futures Games.

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