International Stars Shine at MLB All-Star Game

Elias Díaz of the Colorado Rockies poses after being named the Ted Williams All-Star Game MVP Award during the 93rd MLB All-Star Game presented by Mastercard at T-Mobile Park on July 11, 2023 in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by Steph Chambers/Getty Images)

By Matthew Tallarini
World Baseball Network

The 93rd Major League Baseball All-Star Game featured 32 international born players on Tuesday night. 

The Dominican Republic had 11 All-Stars, Cuba had eight, Venezuela had six, Curacao, Canada, and Japan each had two, and Puerto Rico had one All-Star.

The eight players from Cuba that were selected to this year’s All-Star Game is the nation’s all-time high. 

During Monday night’s Home Run Derby, a new record was set for most home runs in the competition with 341 home runs. The five international players that participated hit 282 home runs in the event. From the Domincan Republic, Julio Rodriguez hit 61 and Vladimir Guerrero Jr. hit 72; from Cuba, Luis Robert Jr. hit 50, Adolis Garcia hit 17, and Randy Arozarena hit 82 home runs during the competition. 

This year, 269 international players started the 2023 Major League Baseball Season on the 40-man roster of the 30 MLB teams. 

Three players were selected to the 2023 All-World Baseball Classic Team and the All-Star Game this season: Randy Arozarena (Played in WBC with Mexico, born in Cuba), Shohei Ohtani (Japan), and Salvador Perez (Venezuela). 

A total of 13 international players that played in the 2023 World Baseball Classic were All-Stars this season: Alexis Diaz (Puerto Rico), Elias Diaz (Colombia), Luis Arraez (Venezuela), Ronald Acuna Jr. (Venezuela), Pablo Lopez (Venezuela), Salvador Perez (Venezuela), Randy Arozarena (Mexico), Juan Soto (Dominican Republic), Julio Rodriguez (Dominican Republic), Wander Franco (Dominican Republic), Shohei Ohtani (Japan), Luis Robert Jr. (Cuba) and Freddie Freeman (Canada). 

Elias Diaz is the first Colombian player to appear in a World Baseball Classic and win the All-Star Game MVP. Diaz was born in Maracaibo, Venezuela, and his father’s family is from Colombia, making him eligible to play for Colombia in the WBC.

During the 2017 Major League All Star Game, there were a total of 27 international born players that were selected to the All-Star Game in Miami at loanDepot Park. 

There were 15 international players that played in the 2017 World Baseball Classic and were selected for the 2017 All-Star Game: Didi Gregorius (The Netherlands), Kenley Jansen (The Netherlands), Xander Boegarts (The Netherlands), Jonathan Schoop (The Netherlands), Jose Altuve (Venezuela), Salvador Perez (Venezuela), Ender Inciarte (Venezuela), Nelson Cruz (Dominican Republic), Robinson Cano (Dominican Republic), Carlos Martinez (Dominican Republic), Ervin Santana (Dominican Republic), Francisco Lindor (Puerto Rico), Yadier Molina (Puerto Rico), Carlos Correa (Puerto Rico), and Roberto Osuna (Mexico). 

New York Yankees relief pitcher Dellin Betances, born in New York, played for the Dominican Republic in the 2017 World Baseball Classic to honor his ancestry and was selected as an All-Star in the same season. 

In 2017, three players were selected from the All-World Baseball Classic Team during the 2017 World Baseball Classic and were All-Stars in the same season: Carlos Correa (Puerto Rico), Yadier Molina (Puerto Rico), and Francisco Lindor (Puerto Rico).

At the start of the 2017 Major League Baseball Season, 29.8% of Major League players were international, with 259 players from outside the U.S. on opening day rosters. The Texas Rangers had the most during the 2017 season, with 14 players from six countries and territories. 

The Dominican Republic had 93 players throughout all 30 organizations at the start of the 2017 regular season. At the start of the 2023 Major League Season the Dominican Republic had 104 players listed on the 26-man rosters of all the franchises. 

Last season, the Dominican Republic had 171 players in total on Major League rosters, an increase of 11.4% year-over-year, and a big jump from the 99 on Opening Day rosters in 2022. 

Venezuela had the second-most with 104 players that ended up on the 26-man rosters at the end of the 2022 regular season which ended up increasing towards 7.1% from the start of last season from 67 born players. Venezuela had 62 born players that were listed on the rosters of all 30 organizations to start the 2023 Major League Baseball regular season. 

The world governing body of baseball, the World Baseball Softball Confederation, which oversees 210 countries’ baseball federations, is one of three main organizers of the World Baseball Classic. World Baseball Classic Inc. and Major League Baseball also organize the World Baseball Classic along with the World Baseball Softball Confederation every four years. 

Marcus Stroman, a 2023 National League All-Star, played for Puerto Rico during the 2023 World Baseball Classic, but helped the United States win their first title in 2017 when Team USA beat Puerto Rico in the championship game at Dodger Stadium. 

On Tuesday night at T-Mobile Park, the National League went on to beat the American League 3-2 for their 45th win during the 93rd Major League Baseball All-Star Game and snapping their nine game losing streak. The American League has 43 wins over the National League in the history of the All-Star Game. 

The 94th Major League Baseball All-Star Game will be played at Globe Life Field in Arlington, TX during the 2024 regular season. 

2023 Major League All-Star Game Notable International Player Performances

Elias Diaz won the 2023 Major League All-Star Game Most Valuable Player Award after hitting a two-run home run over the left field wall in the top eighth inning off relief pitcher Felix Bautista, helping lift the National League to go up 3-2. 

Diaz is the second player from Venezuela to win the MLB All Star Game Most Valuable Player Award. Dave Concepcion won it in 1982, and Diaz is the 15th international born player to accomplish this feat. 

Yandy Diaz hit a solo home run in the bottom of the second inning off starting pitcher Mitch Keller. 

Bautista received the loss and blown save, throwing 0.2 innings allowing one hit, two earned runs, walking two batters, and striking out one. 

Luis Arraez had an RBI single in the top of the fourth inning which tied the game up at one apiece. 

Carlos Estevez pitched the top of the fifth inning and struck out two batters. 

Yennier Cano pitched the top of the sixth inning, allowed one hit and struck out two. 

Alexis Diaz pitched the bottom of the sixth inning, allowing two hits and one earned run. 

Jordan Romano threw 0.1 innings, facing one batter and throwing five pitches. 

Camilo Doval received the win for the National League pitching the seventh inning allowing one hit during his outing. 

Kenley Jansen pitched 0.1 inning and struck out one batter on three pitches. 

Shohei Ohtani walked once and struck out once in his third All-Star Game. 

Randy Arozarena and Lourdes Gurriel Jr. both went 1-for-2 with one strikeout. 

2023 Major League All-Star International Born Selected Players By Country
Japan: Shohei Ohtani (LAA) and Kodei Senga (NYM)
Puerto Rico: Alexis Diaz (CIN) 
Curacao: Kenley Jansen (BOS) and Ozzie Albies (ATL) 
Cuba: Yandy Diaz (TB), Yennier Cano (BAL), Randy Arozarena (TB), Adolis Garcia (TEX), Luis Robert Jr. (CWS), Jorge Soler (MIA), Lourdes Gurriel Jr. (ARI), and Yordan Alvarez (HOU)
Canada: Jordan Romano (TOR) and Freddie Freeman (LAD) 
Venezuela: Luis Arraez (MIA), Ronald Acuna Jr. (ATL), Orlando Arcia (ATL), Pablo Lopez (MIN), Elias Diaz (COL), and Salvador Perez (KC) 
Dominican Republic: Felix Bautista (BAL), Juan Soto (SD), Julio Rodriguez (SEA), Vladimir Guerrero Jr. (TOR), Carlos Estevez (LAA), Geraldo Perdomo (ARI), Camilo Doval (SF), Framber Valdez (HOU), Jose Ramirez (CLE), Wander Franco (TB), and Luis Castillo (SEA) 

MLB All Star Game Most Valuable Player  International Born Players 
1965: Juan Marichal (Dominican Republic) 
1967: Tony Perez (Cuba) 
1982: Dave Concepcion (Venezuela) 
1990: Julio Franco (Dominican Republic) 
1997: Sandy Alomar Jr. (Puerto Rico) 
1998: Roberto Alomar (Puerto Rico) 
1999: Pedro Martinez (Dominican Republic) 
2004: Alfonso Soriano (Dominican Republic) 
2005: Miguel Tejada (Dominican Republic)
2007: Ichiro Suzuki (Japan) 
2012: Melky Cabrera (Dominican Republic) 
2013: Mariano Rivera (Panama) 
2017: Robinson Cano (Dominican Republic) 
2021: Vladimir Guerrero Jr. (Dominican Republic/Canada)

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