ARLINGTON, Texas — Ty France isn’t complaining about having to change his plans of hanging out at the beach during the All-Star break.
The Seattle first baseman, who was snubbed when the initial All-Star team was announced, got the word before the game Sunday that he’d been added to the American League All-Star team. France replaces Los Angeles Angels star Mike Trout, who is out of the game with an injury.
Manager Scott Servais gave France the news in the clubhouse, and the product of Orange County in California was mobbed by his teammates after the announcement.
“I haven’t had a chance to really sit down and let it sink in yet,” said France, who called his wife and parents after finding out the good news. “This is pretty special, just the history alone behind L.A. and Dodger Stadium. To be able to call that hometown and be able to play in my first All-Star Game there is a dream come true.”
France, who leads all AL first basemen in average (.308) and is in the top three in hits and RBI, had a suit packed before the team began its seven-game road trip because rosters hadn’t been announced when it started.
Now the suit will be put to good use.
“I packed planning for it,” France said. “I’m glad it worked out. I was hopeful, but there are a lot of good players in this league. Everyone there is deserving of it. I’m definitely excited to be a part of it.”
Servais said the Mariners, who are riding a 14-game winning streak, deserved to have more than one All-Star. It’s not an issue anymore as France left for Los Angeles on Sunday evening with fellow All-Star Julio Rodriguez.
“Obviously, we all felt that Ty should have been on there much earlier,” Servais said. “Good for him. He’s certainly deserving. He’s been our most consistent guy the entire first half. We deserve more than one guy there, and as Julio said, he needs someone there to babysit him. Ty will have his work cut out for him.”
Marco Gonzales likely gets first start after break
Servais said not to write it in pen, but he has an idea of his rotation plans coming out of the All-Star break for the American League West showdown against Houston.
Left-hander Marco Gonzales likely will get the start Friday followed by right-hander Logan Gilbert and then left-hander Robbie Ray.
That rotation would allow the Mariners to break up Gonzales and Ray.
“Marco will probably go Game One coming out of the break,” Servais said. “After that, I’m not quite sure yet. I’d like to split up Marco and Robbie. It could be Logan after him (Gonzales) and Robbie after them. That’s what we’re kind of throwing around. Marco will throw the first game after the break.”
George Kirby update
The line for rookie George Kirby in his start for Tacoma on Saturday night wasn’t good — two innings, five hits, four runs and 48 pitches — but Servais wasn’t concerned about the numbers. All the reports he received on the start were good.
“Fine,” Servais said of the outing. “I don’t think the line looked great but he felt fine. His stuff was fine. George wants to get back here to help us as soon as possible, and he will be. He’ll be our starter the fifth game coming out after the break. He’s healthy, and he’s all good to go.”
Seattle optioned Kirby to Class AAA Tacoma on July 9 to bring up extra bullpen arms before the break and to limit Kirby’s innings this year. Counting his two innings Saturday, he’s now at 91 innings. The Mariners plan to limit him to 120 to 130 innings this year.