The Liberty Division All-Star team will be chock full of Ducks.
Seven Ducks were selected to play in the Atlantic League All-Star Game on July 11 at Bethpage Ballpark in Central Islip. All-Star selections were based on voting by league officials, coaching staffs, media and fans, and were announced Monday afternoon.
Former Met Jordany Valdespin highlights the Ducks’ spectacular seven. He is joined by former major-leaguers Lew Ford, David Washington and Ramon Cabrera along with pitchers Bennett Parry, Jake Fisher and Wander Perez.
Valdespin has been among the best two or three players in the league this season. He is hitting a league-leading .354 with four home runs and 27 RBIs. He also led the league in hits (85), runs (50), triples (six) and total bases (122) and ranked second in slugging percentage (.508), third in extra-base hits (23) and fourth in on-base percentage (.414) through Sunday. Valdespin is in the midst of a 25-game on-base streak, the longest in the league this season.
Valdespin played for the Mets in 2012-13 and the Marlins in 2014-15.
Ford, a former Twin and Oriole, has been a staple in Central Islip for nearly a decade. He now is in his ninth season with the Ducks and will play in the Atlantic League All-Star Game for the third time. The 41-year-old outfielder, who serves as the team’s hitting coach, is hitting .268 with four home runs and 37 RBIs.
Washington, also a former Oriole, has hit some mammoth home runs for the Ducks. His eight home runs are tied for seventh in the league. Washington is hitting .229 with 28 RBIs.
Cabrera, a former Red, took over the starting catching role after Wilkin Castillo had his contract purchased by the Yankees in May. Cabrera, hitting .237 with eight RBIs, got hurt Saturday night and did not play in the Ducks’ 10-9 loss to the Road Warriors on Sunday, so his status for the All-Star Game is unknown.
Although the Ducks’ three All-Star pitchers do not have any major-league experience, they are some of the Atlantic League’s best.
Parry is a strikeout machine, leading the league with 90 in 60 2⁄3 innings. He is 5-0 with a 2.23 ERA in his first 10 starts. On May 30, Parry struck out 14 Sugar Land Skeeters, tying the Ducks’ single-game record. He has struck out at least 10 batters in five of his starts.
Fisher is second in the league in strikeouts with 61. He is 3-3 with a 4.17 ERA in 11 starts.
Perez is 2-1 with a 2.84 ERA and one save in 27 appearances.
Last week, the league announced that Ducks manager Kevin Baez will manage the Liberty Division, his third time managing in the All-Star Game.