SAN DIEGO -- Paul Goldschmidt is representing the D-backs as a National League All-Star for the fourth consecutive season, this time in tonight's All-Star Game presented by MasterCard at Petco Park.That streak matches Hall of Fame left-hander Randy Johnson (1999-2002) for most consecutive All-Star appearances as a D-back. Johnson and
SAN DIEGO -- Paul Goldschmidt is representing the D-backs as a National League All-Star for the fourth consecutive season, this time in tonight's All-Star Game presented by MasterCard at Petco Park.
That streak matches Hall of Fame left-hander Randy Johnson (1999-2002) for most consecutive All-Star appearances as a D-back. Johnson and Luis Gonzalez hold the overall record of five.
Goldschmidt, at 28 and midway through his sixth big league season, is just getting started. He's in the midst of a five-year, $32.05 million contract with Arizona that runs through the 2018 season with a $14.5 million club option for 2019.
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So for a while, at least, Goldschmidt will continue to bleed D-backs Sedona Red and be in position to set numerous club records.
"I definitely don't take any of the All-Star Games I'm in for granted," Goldschmidt said. "I'm excited to be here and looking forward to having fun, but you know how it goes. You get used to being here and seeing some of the guys again. But it could be my last time, so I just try to take everything in and go out there and play well."
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This year's event is an obvious respite for Goldschmidt, who struggled at the plate earlier this season. The D-backs are 38-52 at the break and in last place in the NL West.
But Goldschmidt is the ultimate team player.
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"I'd rather not be here and have our team playing better," he said. "We want to play better. We're just trying to find a way to do that. The All-Star Game just kind of happens. It's never a goal to make the All-Star team. I just want to play well. If I do that and I get to play here, great. If not, I'll take my days off."
Goldschmidt opened the season hitting .222 through May 15. But that all turned around during his next 49 games as he hit .351 with an OPS of 1.013 to raise his overall batting average to .297.
With 15 homers and 58 RBIs through 88 games, the right-handed slugger is well on the way to matching last year's power numbers of 33 homers, 110 RBIs and a 1.005 OPS.
As pitchers worked around him, issuing 64 walks -- 49 of them by the end of May -- Goldschmidt worked diligently to figure it out.
"I don't think there was one adjustment I had to make," he said. "I think there were a lot of little things. Maybe there was some mechanics or something like that. Most of it was just baseball. Guys make good pitches, and you hit some balls right at guys. You're just slightly off for whatever reason.
"My whole thing was not trying to fix anything, but to just keep on working, to keep trying to get better. I knew eventually I'd start playing better."
And here he is at the All-Star Game for the fourth summer in a row.
Coverage for the 2016 All-Star Game will begin today at 4:30 p.m. MST on FOX.
Barry M. Bloom is a national reporter for MLB.com and writes an MLBlog, Boomskie on Baseball. Follow @boomskie on Twitter.