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Craig selected to All-Star Futures Game


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MILWAUKEE -- Will Craig will be the Pirates’ lone representative at the All-Star Futures Game.

Craig, a 24-year-old first baseman at Class AAA Indianapolis, will be part of the National League team for the seven-inning game at Progressive Field in Cleveland on July 7. He is hitting .258/.338/.476 with 16 home runs in 73 games.

Rosters were announced Friday by Major League Baseball.

The Pirates selected Craig in the first round of the 2016 MLB First-Year Player Draft from Wake Forest. He has a career .262/.356/.416 batting line with 44 homers in 391 minor-league games in four seasons.

Craig has slumped following a strong start to his debut season at the Class AAA level. He has only one home run in his past 27 games after hitting 15 in his first 46.

The Pirates drafted Craig as a third baseman then shifted him across the diamond to first base in 2017, his first full professional season. He has started one game in right field this season and may see more action in the outfield as his path to becoming the Pirates’ first baseman is blocked by the presence of Josh Bell.

Also selected to the NL squad is Diamondbacks catcher prospect Daulton Varsho. His father, Gary Varsho, is a special assistant in the Pirates’ baseball operations department and was an outfielder with the Pirates for four seasons from 1991-92 and 1994-95,

Rays pitching/first baseman prospect Brendan McKay was named to the American League team. He is a graduate of Blackhawk High School in Beaver County.

It is doubtful McKay will participate in the game, though. He is expected to be called up by the Rays from Class AAA Durham on Saturday to make his major-league debut by pitching against the Rangers in St. Petersburg, Fla.

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