Donaldson, Lowrie making All-Star case on the field
OAKLAND -- When Josh Donaldson explains his reasoning behind not checking the vote totals for this year's American League All-Star team, you're inclined to believe that he means it and isn't resorting to false humility.
"Why would I?" Donaldson said. "Miguel Cabrera's going to get voted in."
Donaldson doesn't feel defeated. He just recognizes the vote totals should be going to the Tigers' third baseman -- last year's AL MVP and Triple Crown winner. Cabrera enters Saturday leading the Majors with a .377 average and 81 RBIs, and his 24 home runs are second only to Baltimore's Chris Davis (28).
"He's already had what some guys feel would be a great year," Donaldson said.
Not that Donaldson's any slouch. Oakland's most consistent contributor this season is batting .308 with 12 home runs and 51 RBIs entering Friday. As of last Saturday, Donaldson sat in fifth place in the AL All-Star third-base votes with 635,581. Cabrera leads the position, and all of baseball, with 4,337,223.
Which is why Donaldson thinks fans should vote for shortstop Jed Lowrie to become the first A's position player to appear in an All-Star Game since Ramon Hernandez was selected as a reserve catcher in 2003.
"That sounds great to me," Lowrie said, laughing. The most recent totals placed him in fourth with 1,207,486 votes, behind Baltimore shortstop J.J. Hardy's 2,548,682. "If that's what he thinks, I'll take it."
Lowrie mirrored Donaldson in thinking the A's are deserving of at least one position player selection, in large part because of the team's overall success.
The A's 46-34 record -- third-best in the AL -- matches the best start by an A's team over the past 21 years. They're 103-60 since last July, which is the best mark in the Majors over that span.
"To have a team that's played as well as we have, the most consistent performers throughout the first half deserve to go," said Lowrie, who is batting .306 with a team-best 21 doubles and .378 on-base percentage in his first year since joining the A's from Houston. "And I can say that because I was on a team last year that had one representative, and he was very deserving, but I thought I was too. But because we were on such a bad team we only had one guy go.
"That's always kind of been the way it's been. When you have a winning team, more guys are represented."