SALEM, Va. - The 2018 Carolina League All-Star Classic is less than a week away. The Carolina Mudcats will host this years edition of the All-Star game that will boast a handful of Salem Red Sox players.
Despite still trailing Potomac in the Carolina League Northern Division, five Red Sox players were selected to the All-Star game, the second most in the division behind the Nationals who had six. Salem's representatives include two pitchers and three hitters.
"A lot of kids wish to be in the All-Star game and it's a great gift to be in the All-Star game. You get to meet new players and players from the other leagues so it's great to be there," said Red Sox infielder Santiago Espinal.
"It's a good experience, like my first year when I played in the Dominican and it's a pretty good experience. I know I'm going to have fun there," said pitcher Daniel Gonzalez.
Espinal is in the middle of a breakout season. Batting .307 with seven homeruns through 54 games, he has the fourth best batting average in the league.
"Been a big spark plug for us and we kind of go how he goes. He's a guy that that helps us score runs, so when he gets on base and usually there's a lot of good things that are going to happen for us. Also, he's been driving in a lot of runs. Out of nowhere, for the small frame guy, has had some power in his back and I had no idea he had that kind of pop and he certainly came out of his shell and we're starting to see a young player starting to blossom," said Red Sox manager Joe Oliver.
"I just feel comfortable and I feel unstoppable.I feel like I can do everything with the bat and with the glove too. I just feel comfortable and it went from there," said Espinal.
The All-Star game is Tuesday, June 19 in Zebulon, NC.
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