Red Sox manager Alex Cora, who was leading the American League squad, explained why the reigning league MVP didn’t come to the plate.
“There were other guys that we wanted to play,” Cora told reporters after the AL’s 4-3 win over the National League at Progressive Field in Cleveland. “There were a lot of first-timers. And we kind of like mapped it out. And he was going to come up in the ninth. It just happened that we won the game.”
Betts was making his fourth All-Star appearance and likely will earn more of them before his career concludes. Therefore, it was a classy gesture by Betts and Cora to allow first-time All-Stars, some of whom might never reach that stage again, to make the most of their opportunity.
Betts was named to the AL team as a reserve. He played right field in the eighth and ninth innings.
The other two Red Sox All-Stars were J.D. Martinez and Xander Bogaerts. Martinez started at DH and went 0-for-2 at the plate, while Bogaerts played shortstop and failed to tally a hit in his only at-bat.
The AL’s victory extended its win streak over the NL to seven games.
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