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Youkilis Singles in MLB All-Star Game

Fellow Jewish star, Ryan Braun sits out due to injury
By: Sammy Hudes
Published: July 13th, 2011 in Culture » TV » News
Kevin Youkilis of the Boston Red SoxPic: Wikipedia
Ryan Braun of the Milwaukee BrewersPic: Wikipedia

Tuesday night marked the 82nd annual Major League Baseball All-Star Game, which was played at Chase Field in Phoenix, Arizona. For the second year in a row, the National League team beat the American League squad, this time by a score of 5-1. Prince Fielder, a first baseman for the Milwaukee Brewers, won the Most Valuable Player of the game award, largely due to hitting a three-run homerun over the left-field wall for the National League, during the fourth inning.

With the victory, the NL champion will start the World Series with home-field advantage over their AL counterparts in October. All 30 MLB teams had a representative in the game last night, with Jose Bautista and Ricky Romero participating on behalf of the Toronto Blue Jays.

The Jewish world was represented by two players in the Midsummer Classic; third baseman, Kevin Youkilis of the Boston Red Sox, as well as Fielder’s teammate on the Brewers, Ryan Braun, who plays left field. Braun, who was voted into the game by the fans as a starter, was forced to sit out due to a lingering calf injury. Rather than staying at home, Braun decided to take in the action from the sidelines in Phoenix. He said he wanted to make his presence felt, in order to pay respect to the fans that voted him into the game.

“The fans voted me in, and the least I can do is be there,” Braun, who is known as “The Hebrew Hammer,” told MLB.com. “It’s unfortunate for baseball. Obviously, you want all of those guys to be there and be part of it, but injuries are also part of the game and unavoidable.”

Braun, 27, has not played since July 2 after suffering the injury during an interleague game against the Minnesota Twins. In 83 games so far this season, he has a batting average of .320 with 98 hits, 62 runs batted in and 16 homeruns. This was his fourth All-Star Game selection.

Boston’s Youkilis, an All-Star reserve, drew into the game in the bottom of the fourth inning. He batted one-for-one, hitting a single to left field during the top of the seventh inning. Initially excluded from the All-Star Game roster, Youkilis was called to replace Alex Rodriguez of the New York Yankees, who sat out with a knee injury.

“It was definitely a surprise [to be added to the roster] but it’s a great thing,” said Youkilis, prior to the game. “I’m excited to represent the American League and the Boston Red Sox. Hopefully we can come out on top in that game because it might mean a big thing for us down the road.”

Losing the chance to have home-field advantage should his Red Sox make the World Series is not a big deal according Youkilis, who says that he was happy to play in the game despite the lopsided loss.

“I’ve got the philosophy that we’ve got to win on the road anyway,” he told the Associated Press. “In these All-Star Games, anything can happen. They [the NL] have great pitching. But it was a lot of fun and I enjoyed myself.”

This was Youkilis’ third time playing in the MLB All-Star Game. Through 83 games this year, the 32-year-old is batting .285 with 84 hits, 63 runs batted in and 13 homeruns.

Related articles: Baseball, Major League Baseball, MLB, Sports, All-Star, Youkilis, Braun, Brewers, Red Sox
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