07/12/10 7:09 PM ET
Beltre good to go; M. Young not an All-Star
Girardi misunderstood extent of Boston third baseman's inury
By Ian Browne and T.R. Sullivan / MLB.com
How did the confusion start?
Beltre tweaked his left hamstring and had to leave Sunday's game at Toronto in the fifth inning. Though Beltre said late Sunday afternoon that he expected to play, it was only natural for a reporter to follow up on the matter with American League manager Joe Girardi at Monday morning's press conference.
"He was replaced by Michael Young from the Texas Rangers," Girardi informed the media.
As it turns out, Girardi misunderstood his communication with Phyllis Merhige, the senior vice president of club relations for Major League Baseball. Merhige simply wanted Girardi to be aware of Beltre's hamstring problem and told him that Young -- because he was next in line in the player voting -- would be the replacement if Boston's third baseman couldn't play.
When the media availability started for the American League on Monday, a reporter -- assuming Beltre had willingly asked off the team -- asked him about withdrawing his name from the roster.
Beltre, unaware of Girardi's remarks at the press conference, seemed nothing short of stunned.
"[I'm] good enough to play, I think." Beltre said "Nobody told me I was being replaced. Who makes this decision?"
Scott Boras, who represents Beltre, informed Major League Baseball that his client had no designs on giving up the chance to play in the first All-Star appearance of his career.
By Monday afternoon, Beltre was in uniform with the rest of the AL during batting practice. He did some running and took some grounders before hitting, and then declared himself good to go in Tuesday night's game.
Beltre has had numerous hamstring ailments in the past.
"This was a little different because it felt like it was going to pop and it just felt like a cramp going through my leg," said Beltre. "I felt like if I put pressure on my leg, it would cramp up. It's something a little different. I was able to maybe run a little bit, but I felt like if I stretched or pushed a little bit, it could get worse."
Beltre's participation is likely to be minimal in Tuesday's game. The AL has two other third basemen in Evan Longoria and Alex Rodriguez.
Young, who has been to six straight All-Star Games, would replace Beltre if the Boston third baseman decides at the last minute he can't play. But there are no plans for that right now.