During my career, I've been working to improve and to be the best baseball player that I can be on the field. I've never thought about anything else other than that -- to give the best of me, help my team win games and make my family, friends and fans proud of me.
Obviously, I've passed through tough moments, but those moments taught me how to be better, how to improve and develop as a player to reach this point in my career.
I've always believed in myself, no matter what other people say or think about me. I've always believed in my abilities, in what I am capable of, and I also know that there are a lot of people who believe in me too.
:: Chicago White Sox: In My Words ::
Having the opportunity to be in the All Star Game and represent the Chicago White Sox is a huge honor for me, but it is also recognition of all the sacrifices, all the hard work and effort that I've been putting into my career, especially since the last offseason.
After the 2016 season, I made a statement. I knew I had to work harder, be in better shape and have more focus in the game if I wanted to take advantage of the abilities that God gave me to play baseball, because He blessed me with these abilities.
Among the adjustments that I made during the winter, I started to eat healthier to lose weight and help my body be faster and more agile. That has helped me to run better, to keep my legs fresh, loose and to move better in the outfield.
I also worked hard in the gym in my offseason. I play winter ball in Venezuela, and I gained more experience there. I learned more. I had a routine that started at 5 a.m. in the gym, then in the afternoon, three or four times a week, I went to hit.
All that work, all that preparation, has been the key of my success this year and the reason why I have the opportunity to play in the All-Star Game for the very first time in my career. Being part of the All-Star Game is a dream come true. Every baseball player who reaches the big leagues dreams of playing in an All-Star Game. I'm going to try to enjoy it and take advantage of the experience, along with my family.
This wouldn´t happen without all the support of my teammates, coaches and [manager] Ricky [Renteria] because this is a team game, and I couldn't make it without them.
Going to the All-Star Game is another of God's blessings for me this year. I'm expecting the birth of my second child, and it will be my first boy.
All of this, especially my selection for the All-Star Game, is extra motivation for me to keep working hard and remain focused to do my best every day. I know there is still a lot for me to accomplish in my career.
Now the responsibility is even higher. This is just a starting point.