ARLINGTON -- Ron Washington's AL squad lost to Bruce Bochy's National League squad, 5-1, last year, but the Rangers manager is looking forward to going back to the All-Star Game. With a new Collective Bargaining Agreement in place, all pitchers will be eligible to take the mound in the All-Star Game, where previously players who pitched on the Sunday before were ineligible. "It means everything," Washington said. "I can go there with the best the American League has to offer. The National League certainly had the best they had to offer. That's for sure. Make no excuse, we got beat. It it don't work out, you can blame me."
Washington's Rangers finish a three-game series against Jim Leyland's Tigers Wednesday. Washington said that Leyland has not made any suggestions on behalf of his players but knows that Justin Verlander is among the candidates to start for the AL in this year's All-Star Game. "Whatever Jimmy asks, Jimmy gets," Washington said. "He's a veteran of many All-Star Games, many World Series, many ballgames. Jimmy doesn't make suggestions. He just holds conversations." The league that wins the All-Star Game will also hold home-field advantage in the World Series. The Rangers, despite winning six more games than the Cardinals in 2011, were a victim of that rule last year. "I'd like to have more games at home if I'm in the World Series," Washington said. "I've heard people say it's a disadvantage, but I didn't think it was a disadvantage. We still could've won, whether we were in St. Louis or Texas."