Eight Players Selected for Japan All-Star Series
A team of Major Leaguer stars will conduct an off-season tour of Japan for the 37th time this year, a tradition that dates back to 1908.
This year's seven-game Japan All-Star Series with Nippon Professional Baseball – the first tour since 2014 -- begins Nov. 8 with the first of four games at the Tokyo Dome against the Yomiuri Giants. After that they play Nov. 13 in Hiroshima and finish with two games in Nagoya on Nov. 14-15.
The Players Association and MLB on Sept. 10 announced the first wave of stars to sign on for the tour -- catcher Yadier Molina of the Cardinals, third baseman Eugenio Suárez of the Reds and outfielder Christian Yelich of the Brewers, outfielder Ronald Acuña Jr. of the Braves, Phillies teammates Rhys Hoskins and Carlos Santana, Royals second baseman Whit Merrifield, and Dodgers infielder/outfielder Chris Taylor.
Santana is the only player on the roster so far to have previously participated in a Japan All-Star series. Molina is no stranger to the international stage, as he has played for Team Puerto Rico in all four editions of the World Baseball Classic. Yelich also appeared in the World Baseball Classic for Team USA in 2017.
The complete roster will be announced in the coming weeks.
Six-time All-Star and 1985 AL MVP Don Mattingly has been named the manager of the MLB team. He made his managerial debut in 2011 with the Dodgers and is currently finishing out his third year as manager of the Miami Marlins.
In addition to the Tokyo Dome, the venues will be Mazda Zoom Zoom Stadium in Hiroshima and the Nagoya Dome. MLB Network will provide live telecasts of the games from Nov. 9-15.
MLB will return to Japan shortly after the All-Star series on March 20-21 for a two-game Opening Series between the A's and Mariners at the Tokyo Dome. It will be the first time since 2012 MLB has opened its season in Tokyo. Both clubs will also be playing NPB teams in additional exhibition games on March 17-18.