-Former University of Georgia standout and Los Angeles Angels infielder Jared Walsh has been selected to the American League All-Star team, Major League Baseball (MLB) announced Monday.
Walsh ranks in the top five in the American League in RBI (61), home runs (20), doubles (22), extra-base hits (43) and slugging percentage (.556). He has provided two walk-off hits this year and hit a game-tying grand slam in the ninth inning at Yankee Stadium last week off seven-time All-Star Aroldis Chapman. Walsh joins Angels teammates Shohei Ohtani (DH/P) and Mike Trout (OF) on this year’s All-Star squad.
A 39th round selection by the Angles in 2015, Walsh is the fourth Bulldog in school history to receive this honor, joining pitcher Spurgeon “Spud Chandler, infielder Glenn Davis and pitcher Alex Wood. Chandler was a four-time All-Star (1942-43-46-47) with the New York Yankees while Davis (1986 & 89) was a two-time All-Star with the Houston Astros. Wood, who currently pitches for the San Francisco Giants, made the 2017 All-Star team when he played with the Los Angeles Dodgers. Wood is 7-3 with a 3.89 ERA in 14 starts this year for the Giants who lead the Majors with a 53-31 record.
According to the Elias Sports Bureau, Walsh becomes just the 11th position player drafted in the 39th round or later to make an All-Star team and the first since Brian LaHair made the 2012 A.L. All-Star squad. (LaHair was a 39th round pick in 2002). Walsh made his Major League debut in 2019.
Walsh, a two-way standout served as a co-captain during his senior season at Georgia in 2015. He posted a team-best 5-2 record and 2.60 ERA plus hit a career-best .306 with 14 doubles, three home runs and 22 RBI. A four-year letterman, he finished his Bulldog career with a .271 average, seven home runs and 58 RBI in 139 games including 116 starts. While he has pitched in relief at the Major League level, he has been only a position player in 2021 with 60 starts at first base and 17 in right field.
The 2021 MLB All-Star Game is slated for Tuesday, July 13, at Coors Field in Denver, Colo. The 91st annual Midsummer Classic will air live on FOX at 7:30 p.m. ET. The starters were selected by a fan vote while the pitchers and reserves were chosen by a combination of player voting and the commissioner’s office. The starting first baseman for the American League will be Vladimir Guerrero Jr. (Toronto Blue Jays) who is batting .336 with 27 home runs and 69 RBI.