Wood joins NL roster for first All-Star Game

'I'm very humbled by it,' says Dodgers lefty, who replaces Kershaw

July 7th, 2017

LOS ANGELES -- Alex Wood has been pitching like an All-Star and MLB made it official on Friday, adding the Dodgers lefty to the National League team for the 2017 All-Star Game presented by Mastercard.
"Definitely the coolest thing to happen to me in my life and my career," said Wood, who got the news on Thursday. "It still hasn't completely sunk in yet, but I'm sure when I step on that field Monday…I'm very humbled by it."
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With number that rival those of teammate , Wood effectively replaces his teammate, who was named to his seventh consecutive All-Star berth but won't pitch in the All-Star Game because he's starting for the Dodgers on Sunday against the Royals.
"I was pretty disheartened when I didn't make it originally, but I knew there was still a chance, so I just focused on what I can control," said Wood. "I started [the season] in the bullpen and didn't have the innings some guys had and it kind of makes you wonder if quantity trumps quality. I guess I was right on that line. It all worked out so I'm very happy."

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This marks the first career All-Star selection for Wood, who tied a team record on Wednesday when he became the first Dodgers pitcher since 1962 to begin a season 10-0. The five-year veteran has a 1.67 ERA and 97 strikeouts in 80 2/3 innings.
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Because Wood has had more than his share of doubters who cite his funky delivery and need for Tommy John surgery after high school, the selection is even sweeter.
"I guess you could say that," he said. "In college and the Draft, the way I threw always threw people off and I always told people, 'If you know anything about pitching, I have good mechanics. As long as you get there it doesn't matter how you get there.' From 2009 to 2016, I had a pretty clean record, and I got hurt last year swinging a bat. You get to the point where you wonder, 'When do people stop saying those things?' But at this stage, I try not to look into everything that everybody says."
The 26-year-old Wood joins teammates Kershaw, , , and to give the Dodgers a league-high six All-Stars for the first time since 1991 (Brett Butler, Ramon Martinez, Mike Morgan, Eddie Murray, Juan Samuel and Darryl Strawberry).
Wood hears talk that the Dodgers are looking to acquire another front-line starter to pair with Kershaw. "With my career numbers and numbers this year, go out and find somebody with better numbers to be a No. 2 and then come talk to me," he said.
He said the support from teammates in the last week had made an impact.
"You want to have the respect of your peers, that they think you're a quality player and they respect how you play and go about your business and your talent," he said. "Some of the things they've said meant a whole lot to me."