Altuve, Astros seeking boost in All-Star voting
Astros second baseman Jose Altuve leads the Major Leagues in hits and multi-hit games, leads the American League in stolen bases, and hasn't committed an error this year.
He was not, however, among the top vote-getters at second base in the AL when the first round of balloting totals was released Tuesday for this summer's All-Star Game. In fact, no Astros players were among the leaders in votes at their positions.
Those Astros fans wanting to see Altuve in the Midsummer Classic for a second time will need to give him a voting boost. The top five vote-getters at second base in the AL were Ian Kinsler of the Tigers (356,244), Robinson Cano of the Mariners (350,294), Dustin Pedroia of the Red Sox (343,321), Brian Dozier of the Twins (194,941) and Howie Kendrick of the Angels (165,003).
"It doesn't surprise me, but at the same time when you start to think about the All-Star voting, it's one of those things that once the teams are announced, and the managers and the coaches get an opportunity to select players, and I could be biased in my opinion, [but] I don't think there's anybody who would look at Jose Altuve and say that he's not an All-Star," manager Bo Porter said.
Altuve has six more hits than Kinsler and 10 more than Cano. His 16 doubles trail only Kinsler and Pedroia -- both of whom have 17 -- at the position, and he's third in batting average among AL second basemen at .323. Altuve's 22 multi-hit games, including eight three-hit games, lead the AL at any position.
"You look and you just go, 'Wow.' It's good to see a guy rewarded for the type of commitment that he's made to his career," Porter said. "He's been a great teammate and just doing everything we can ask of our All-Star second baseman."
Fans may submit up to 25 online ballots, but they can also earn a one-time bonus of 10 additional online ballots. To access these additional online ballots, you must be logged into your MLB.com account when you submit any online ballot. If you do not have an MLB.com account, register on the site in accordance with the enrollment instructions for a free MLB.com account.
The 2014 All-Star teams will be unveiled on the 2014 MLB All-Star Game Selection Show during the weekend of July 5-6, with further details to follow on MLB.com. The AL will have nine elected starters via the fan balloting program, while the NL will have eight fan-elected starters. Pitchers and reserves for both squads -- totaling 25 for the NL and 24 for the AL -- will be determined through a combination of "Player Ballot" choices and selections made by All-Star managers Mike Matheny (NL) and John Farrell (AL).
Immediately following the announcement of the rosters, you can select the final player for each league's 34-man roster via the 2014 All-Star Game MLB.com Final Vote Sponsored by Experian. Choose again at that point from among five players in each league. The Final Vote returns for its 13th season with more than 430 million votes cast to date, and you'll be able to make selections on MLB.com, club sites and your mobile device.
You'll be on a voting tear at that point, having already selected starters and the last men, and the ritual will not end there. The final phase of All-Star Game voting will again have fans participating in the voting for the Ted Williams All-Star Game Most Valuable Player Award presented by Chevrolet. During the big game, vote exclusively online at MLB.com via the 2014 All-Star Game MLB.com MVP Vote Sponsored by Pepsi. The fan voice will represent 20 percent of the overall vote that determines the recipient of the Arch Ward Trophy.
MLB.com will provide extensive online coverage of the All-Star Week festivities.
The 85th All-Star Game will be televised nationally by FOX, in Canada by Rogers Sportsnet and RDS, and worldwide by partners in more than 200 countries via MLB International's independent feed. ESPN Radio and ESPN Radio Deportes will provide national radio coverage of the All-Star Game. MLB Network and SiriusXM will also provide comprehensive All-Star Week coverage. For more information, please visit allstargame.com.
Jason Castro, who was the Astros' first AL representative at the All-Star Game last year, is hitting .229 with six homers and 25 RBIs, which is tied with rookie George Springer for the team lead. Center fielder Dexter Fowler leads the Astros with a .381 on-base percentage by way of being fourth in the AL with 32 walks.
As for Springer? The hotshot rookie already leads the team in home runs and is tied for the lead in RBIs, but he's not on the All-Star ballot.