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Alfaro making All-Star case with all-around game

@JoeFrisaro
June 17, 2019

Read our FAQ on this year’s revamped balloting format, which includes two phases of fan voting to determine the All-Star starters, and the ability to vote through Google Search. ST. LOUIS -- Marlins catcher Jorge Alfaro is showing flashes of star power. You see it with his enormous power, cannon

Read our FAQ on this year’s revamped balloting format, which includes two phases of fan voting to determine the All-Star starters, and the ability to vote through Google Search.

ST. LOUIS -- Marlins catcher Jorge Alfaro is showing flashes of star power. You see it with his enormous power, cannon for a throwing arm, and athleticism running the bases.

For Alfaro, who turned 26 on June 11, becoming an all-around catcher is a matter of consistency and continuing to gain more experience. The Marlins envision him as a cornerstone in their building process, and he’s also making a case to be an All-Star in his first season with the Marlins.

“He brings energy,” Marlins manager Don Mattingly said. “He’s a guy who has been excited about being here. We still look at him as a long player, as far as, experience, and everything. But he’s a guy who brings a lot of energy. He plays with fire. He’s a big, strong, physical kid. He’s having a pretty good year.”

The Marlins acquired Alfaro from the Phillies as part of the J.T. Realmuto trade.

Alfaro entered Monday night hitting .270 with nine home runs and 27 RBIs. More than the standard statistics, his physical attributes are revealed by Statcast. The native of Colombia has the strongest arm strength on throws to second base. His average is 88.2 mph, and his pop time on throws to second on attempted steals is 1.98 seconds. The MLB average is 2.01 seconds.

“I’m doing what I was doing last year, and every year that I’ve been in baseball,” Alfaro said. “I’m just having fun, being me. Being myself. Enjoying the game.”

At the plate, his average exit velocity on balls put in play is 91.2 mph, and his hardest hit ball this year was 113.7 mph, putting him in elite company.

Even running, don’t get fooled by the fact Alfaro is a catcher. His sprint speed, per Statcast, is 28.9 feet per second. A competitive time is 27 feet per second.

Alfaro is developing into a leader on the young team, with the passion that he plays, the energy he brings.

“That’s what I’ve been doing, trying to be the leader here,” Alfaro said. “I’m trying to earn that confidence, not just from the pitchers, but from everybody.

“They see me working. That I want to do things. If I can’t do it, I’m trying my best to make things happen. I think you can see the way I play. A lot of people like to talk, and they don’t do anything. I’d rather show everybody that I want to be here, that I want to play full time.”

Marlins fans still have time to show their support for Alfaro, as well as the rest of the Miami regulars in the All-Star voting process.

Fans may vote in "The Primary" at MLB.com and all 30 club sites, the MLB At Bat and MLB Ballpark apps up to five times in any 24-hour period. Fans in the US and Canada can also vote on Google Search for every position, or up to 17 unique players per day, by searching "MLB Vote" or the names of their favorite players. Primary voting ends at 4 p.m. ET on Friday.

The top three vote-getters at each position (including nine outfielders) per league will move on to "The Starters Election," which begins at noon ET on Wednesday, June 26. The votes will reset for a 28-hour voting window that ends at 4 p.m. ET on Thursday, June 27. Starters for the 2019 Midsummer Classic will be unveiled on ESPN that night at 7 ET. The pitchers and reserves will be announced on Sunday, June 30, at 5:30 p.m. ET.

Then on Tuesday, July 9, during the 2019 All-Star Game presented by Mastercard, fans may visit MLB.com and the 30 club sites to submit their choices for the Ted Williams Most Valuable Player Award presented by Chevrolet.

The 90th Midsummer Classic, at Progressive Field in Cleveland, will be televised nationally by FOX Sports; in Canada by Rogers Sportsnet and RDS; and worldwide by partners in more than 180 countries. FOX Deportes will provide Spanish-language coverage in the United States, while ESPN Radio and ESPN Radio Deportes will provide exclusive national radio coverage. MLB Network, MLB.com and SiriusXM also will provide comprehensive All-Star Week coverage. For more information about MLB All-Star Week and to purchase tickets, please visit AllStarGame.com and follow @MLB and @AllStarGame on social media.

Injury updates

• Jon Berti (left oblique strain) continues all baseball activities at the Roger Dean Chevrolet Stadium complex in Jupiter, Fla.

• Riley Ferrell (right biceps tendinitis) is scheduled to throw two innings in a rehab assignment with Triple-A New Orleans on Tuesday.

• Peter O’Brien (left rib contusion) is scheduled to begin a rehab assignment with Class A Advanced Jupiter.

• Caleb Smith (left hip inflammation) threw long toss on Sunday and scheduled to throw a bullpen on Tuesday.

• Drew Steckenrider (right elbow inflammation) was cleared to start a throwing program Monday.

• Neil Walker (right quad strain) is continuing running progression and all baseball activities in Jupiter.

• Chad Wallach (concussion) is continuing all baseball activity in Jupiter.

Joe Frisaro has covered the Marlins for MLB.com since 2002. Follow him on Twitter @JoeFrisaro and listen to his podcast.