Valencia, Butera to represent MLB in trip to Taiwain
Twins third baseman Danny Valenica and catcher Drew Butera are headed to Taiwan to play against the Chinese Taipei national team in the 2011 Taiwan All-Star Series early next month.
Major League Baseball and the MLB Players Association announced today the majority of the team of MLB All-Stars traveling to Taiwan in November.
The Taiwan All-Star Series will consist of five games played between Nov. 1-6 in three different cities — New Taipei City (XinZhuang Stadium) on Nov. 1, Taichung (Intercontinental Stadium) on Nov. 3 and 4 and Kaohsiung (Chengcing Lake Stadium) on Nov. 5 and 6.
Each game will feature MLB All-Stars playing the Chinese Taipei national team and all games will be broadcast live in Taiwan by FTV, MLB’s exclusive over-the-air broadcaster for regular season and postseason games.
Valencia is one of three third basemen on the roster, joining Arizona’s Ryan Roberts and San Francisco’s Pablo Sandoval. Valencia, 27, hit .246 with a .294 on-base percentage and a .383 slugging percentage with 15 homers and 72 RBIs in 154 games.
Butera, 28, joins Angels backstop Jeff Mathis as one of two catchers on the roster. Butera batted .167/.210/.239 with two homers and 23 RBIs in 93 games.
The roster is headlined by Yankees center fielder Curtis Granderson — who led the Majors in runs scored (136) and ranked second in the Majors with 41 home runs — and his teammate Robinson Cano, who was second in the American League with 118 RBIs. Tigers first baseman and AL batting champion (.344) Miguel Cabrera, currently playing in the American League Championship Series, will make the trip subject to his postseason commitments.
Others on the roster, which is not yet complete, are infielders Erick Aybar (Angels), Michael Morse (Nationals), Skip Schumaker (Cardinals); outfielders Emilio Bonifacio (Marlins) and Logan Morrison (Marlins); and pitchers Bill Bray (Reds), Ross Detwiler (Nationals), Dillon Gee (Mets), Jeremy Guthrie (Orioles), Mark Melancon (Astros) and Jose Veras (Pirates).
Giants manager Bruce Bochy, who guided San Francisco to its first World Championship since 1954 in ‘10, will manage the MLB All-Stars. Bochy’s coaching staff will be composed of Giants bench coach Ron Wotus, Giants bullpen catcher Billy Hayes, Dodgers pitching coach Rick Honeycutt and Rays hitting coach Derek Shelton.
The remainder of the roster will be announced in the coming weeks.