SAN FRANCISCO -- The Giants handled Part One of the campaign to help Brandon Belt win the 2016 Esurance MLB All-Star Game Final Vote.Part Two was up to Belt himself. And he performed his tasks with the skill that the Giants' marketing department displayed in theirs. He tripled and hit
SAN FRANCISCO -- The Giants handled Part One of the campaign to help Brandon Belt win the 2016 Esurance MLB All-Star Game Final Vote.
Part Two was up to Belt himself. And he performed his tasks with the skill that the Giants' marketing department displayed in theirs. He tripled and hit his National League-leading 27th double in four at-bats to contribute to San Francisco's 5-1 triumph Wednesday night over the Colorado Rockies.
If Belt was distracted by the additional interviews he conducted or the social media buzz the Giants generated on his behalf, he didn't show it. "Or else he's trying to state a case, too," Giants manager Bruce Bochy said.
Belt insisted that he's trying to do nothing but excel. If fans casting Final Vote ballots happen to consider his best efforts to be All-Star worthy, so much the better.
"It's kind of cool to be in this position anyway," said Belt, who lifted his batting average to an even .300. "So whatever happens, happens. I feel like I've done pretty much all I can do this first half. I think I'm more focused on finishing the season off well, trying to help us get in the playoffs and win the World Series."
On the rare nights that batted balls carry well at pitcher-friendly AT&T Park, both of Belt's hits might have cleared the outfield barrier for home runs. But not on this 59-degree night.
"I thought the first one was gone," Belt said of his triple, which drove in a first-inning run. "But, having played here multiple games, I knew there was a chance it wouldn't go. So, I feel like I ran pretty well out of the box and just got going so I could get to third. Second one, I didn't think I hit it high enough. I thought it was going to be off the wall."
Belt, who led the field of five Esurance Final Vote candidates in Wednesday's initial update, was proud to be part of the Giants' contingent that owns the Major Leagues' best record at 54-33, as well as a six-game lead over the Dodgers in the NL West.
"That tells you how special this team is," he said. "With the guys that we have out of our lineup and for the younger guys to step in and play important roles and contribute, it really has been awesome to watch."
Chris Haft has covered the Giants since 2005, and for MLB.com since 2007. Follow him on Twitter at @sfgiantsbeat and listen to his podcast.