Hunter Pence was removed from the American League roster for the All-Star Game on Wednesday, with the risk of again aggravating his right groin in an exhibition behind the decision.
So, Hunter, just how disappointed are you to not make your first All-Star start?
“Not at all,” he said.
The big picture in all that was in his mind as he spoke to the media. His obligation is to be available every day to the Texas Rangers, and participating in the Midsummer Classic could jeopardize that.
Pence will likely return from the 10-day injured list during the second-half-opening series against the Houston Astros after a few rehab games. He was on rehab assignment Monday at Double A Frisco when he felt tightness in the groin while running.
“I put everything in to playing every day,” Pence said. “It’s part of the job. These things happen. It’s still just an honor to go. I would have love to have played, but we’re right of that cusp where I’m so close to being back. The main focus is playing the regular-season games, giving everything we have to make a playoff run and chase the dream of winning a World Series.”
Boston shortstop Xander Bogaerts took Pence’s place on the roster, and Red Sox manager Alex Cora will selected a starter at designated hitter for Pence. A logical choice is Red Sox DH J.D. Martinez, who finished second in the fan voting but first in the player vote.