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Moose making strong push for 3rd ASG trip

Royals third baseman won AL Final Vote campaign in 2015, '17
MLB.com @FlannyMLB

KANSAS CITY -- As voting with the Camping World MLB All-Star Ballot began on Friday, one of the Royals having an arguably All-Star season so far is third baseman Mike Moustakas.

VOTE: 2018 Camping World MLB All-Star Ballot

KANSAS CITY -- As voting with the Camping World MLB All-Star Ballot began on Friday, one of the Royals having an arguably All-Star season so far is third baseman Mike Moustakas.

VOTE: 2018 Camping World MLB All-Star Ballot

Again.

Moustakas is a two-time All-Star, having been voted in with the American League Final Vote campaign in 2015 and '17. He also participated in the Home Run Derby in 2017.

The All-Star experiences are something Moustakas said he'll never forget.

"It's unbelievable to be considered a Major League All-Star," Moustakas said. "And to be voted in the Final Vote both times, that's pretty special. The fans of Kansas City got me to the All-Star Game.

"As a player, it's something you work toward, it's something you hope to be. The Home Run Derby was amazing, too."

Entering Friday, Moustakas was hitting .280 with 12 home runs and 39 RBIs. Moustakas, who set the franchise single-season record last season with 38 home runs, again is on pace for a 30-plus homer season.

Right now, only the Indians' Jose Ramirez is having a better statistical season among third basemen -- 18 homers, 41 RBIs and a 1.030 OPS entering Friday's action.

In 2015, Moustakas' trip to his first All-Star Game in Cincinnati was emotional -- his mother, Connie, was battling cancer at the time, but he was able to present her with his All-Star Game jersey. She passed away that August.

"It was a time I'll never forget," he said.

Certainly, Moustakas would like to make one more trip to the All-Star Game as a Royal -- he is on a one-year deal and could be a candidate to be dealt at the non-waiver Trade Deadline.

"You think about [the All-Star Game], but if it happens it happens," he said. "You play for your team every day. That's what we're here for. But if you're lucky enough to get to the All-Star Game, that's awesome."

Fans may cast votes for starters at MLB.com and all 30 club sites -- on computers, tablets and smartphones -- exclusively online using the 2018 Camping World MLB All-Star Ballot until Thursday, July 5, at 10:59 p.m. CT. On smartphones and tablets, fans can also access the ballot via the MLB At Bat and MLB Ballpark mobile apps. Each fan can vote up to five times in any 24-hour period, for a maximum of 35 ballots cast.

Following the announcement of this year's All-Star starters, reserves and pitchers, fans should return to MLB.com and cast their 2018 Camping World MLB All-Star Final Vote for the final player on each league's roster. Then on Tuesday, July 17, while watching the 2018 All-Star Game presented by Mastercard live on FOX, fans may visit MLB.com to submit their choices for the Ted Williams Most Valuable Player Award presented by Chevrolet with the 2018 MLB All-Star Game MVP Vote.

The 89th Midsummer Classic, at Nationals Park in Washington, D.C., 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 of the All-Star Game. 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.

Jeffrey Flanagan has covered the Royals since 1991, and for MLB.com since 2015. Follow him on Twitter @FlannyMLB.

Kansas City Royals, Mike Moustakas