Realistically, Giants manager Bruce Bochy expected his team to have four representatives in the All-Star Game.
And with some assistance from the fans and players and his own clout as National League skipper, Bochy will have them in Cincinnati next week.
Brandon Crawford was picked in the vote of the players, it was announced on Monday, while Bochy added Madison Bumgarner and Joe Panik to the roster. The fans selected Buster Posey as a starter earlier.
Crawford and Panik will make their All-Star Game debuts.
“I think it might hit me more when I’m in Cincinnati,” Panik said before the series opener against the New York Mets at AT&T Park. “I don’t know what an All-Star is supposed to feel like. It’s just a really big honor to be named an All-Star. It’s one of the highest honors you can get in this game.”
Bochy referred to the addition of Panik as a “no-brainer.” He informed the second baseman of the news before the series finale in Washington, D.C., on Sunday.
“It has been a grind this past week for the guys going through this losing streak,” Bochy said. “I wanted to do something to lift him up. It definitely put a hop to his step. He was really, really excited like a little kid. I’m sure that was going through his mind. It should have been with the first half that he’s had.”
For Bumgarner, the selection marked an opportunity to pitch in an All-Star Game for the first time in his career.
“He’s excited about going,” Bochy said. “I talked quite a bit with him [on Sunday], and he’s pumped. Trust me, I’m going to do all I can to make sure he pitches.”
Sonny Gray and Stephen Vogt will represent the Athletics on the American League team, although Gray is unlikely to pitch in the game.
Gray has been pencilled in to start tonight and Sunday. That would take him out of consideration for an All-Star appearance, but he could participate in the related events.
Bochy had nine selections, three of which were all but made for him.
Because each team was required to have one representative, at least one member of the Milwaukee Brewers, Philadelphia Phillies and San Diego Padres had to be among his selections.
“There are tough decisions, and that’s every year,” Bochy said. “But it’s an honor, and I enjoy it. I really do.”
In addition to Panik, Bochy chose starting pitchers A.J. Burnett (Pittsburgh Pirates) and Michael Wacha (St. Louis Cardinals), relievers Jonathan Papelbon (Phillies) and Francisco Rodriguez (Brewers), first baseman Adrian Gonzalez (Los Angeles Dodgers), catcher Yasmani Grandal (Dodgers), outfielder Justin Upton (Padres) and rookie third baseman Kris Bryant (Chicago Cubs).
The players selected first baseman Anthony Rizzo (Cubs), second baseman DJ LeMahieu (Colorado Rockies), third baseman Nolan Arenado (Rockies), outfielders A.J. Pollock (Arizona Diamondbacks), rookie Joc Pederson (Dodgers), and catcher Yadier Molina (Cardinals). Andrew McCutchen (Pirates) was named to replace the injured Giancarlo Stanton (Miami Marlins.)
Their other selections included starting pitchers Max Scherzer (Washington Nationals), Gerrit Cole (Pirates), Zack Greinke (Dodgers), Shelby Miller (Atlanta Braves) and Jacob deGrom (New York Mets) as well as relievers Aroldis Chapman (Cincinnati Reds), Trevor Rosenthal (Cardinals) and Mark Melancon (Pirates).
Fans can vote for the 34th and final player for each roster via MLB.com through Friday.
“It’s a credit to the players,” Bochy said. “I thought they did a great job in their selections. They took all the players that deserved to be there, and it made my job a little easier, too.”All-Star GameBrandon CrawfordBruce BochyBuster PoseyJoe PanikMadison BumgarnerMLBSan Francisco GiantsSonny GrayStephen Vogt