Mason: Baseball gods smile upon Xander Bogaerts after hellacious early BP session

Associated Press

Xander Bogaerts is officially an All-Star.

It shouldn't have been this hard, but Xander Bogaerts is finally an All-Star

Boston's most consistent player in the first half, Bogaerts was snubbed first in the fan voting, then by the players, but this afternoon he was added as an injury replacement for Hunter Pence.

It's well-deserved.

Bogaerts leads AL shortstops in extra-base hits (44), RBIs (58), and OPS (.933). Steady in the field, Bogaerts has also grown into a leadership role this season. He's become a go-to guy for young players in the Red Sox clubhouse.

Chris Mason is a Red Sox beat writer for the Eagle-Tribune and CNHI Sports Boston. Email him at cmason@northofboston.com, and follow him on Twitter at @ByChrisMason