When the Orioles sent John Means to the All-Star Game in 2019, he didn’t make it onto the field to appear in the game. The same won’t happen for Cedric Mullins this year.
American League manager Kevin Cash announced Monday in Denver that Mullins would replace injured starter Mike Trout as the team’s starting center fielder for Tuesday’s showcase game at Coors Field, with the Orioles’ star batting ninth.
Mullins was a choice that Orioles manager Brandon Hyde and some of the other players lobbied for as the starter, and it helped that he was also statistically the best candidate.
Entering the All-Star break Monday, Mullins was best among American League outfielders in wins above replacement (3.8, according to FanGraphs) and either first or second at the position in batting average (.314), OPS (.921), and steals (16), among other categories.
With Trout out, the voted starters include right fielder Aaron Judge and left fielder Teoscar Hernández. Among the American League reserves, Mullins’ stiffest competition to start would have been Michael Brantley of the Houston Astros, though he doesn’t play center field and opted out of the game.
Cash’s available choices included Texas’ Joey Gallo and Adolis García.
This article may be updated.