Guerrero looks for All-Star return
Sluggers heads up list of Angels on Midsummer Classic ballot
A seven-time All-Star, Angels right fielder Vladimir Guerrero is off to another strong start in his bid to start the All-Star Game for the fourth consecutive year. The game will be played in San Francisco on July 10.Guerrero was the third-highest vote-getter in the American League in the 2006 balloting, and he expressed his gratitude to the fans who elected him by powering a homer against the Dodgers' Brad Penny in his first at-bat. Fans can cast their votes for starters up to 25 times with the Monster 2007 All-Star Online Ballot at MLB.com and all 30 Club sites until Thursday, June 28 at 11:59 p.m. ET. Fans around the world will again have the opportunity to select the final player on each All-Star team via the Monster 2007 All-Star Final Vote. The vote will begin immediately following the 2007 MLB All-Star Game Selection Show Presented by Chevrolet, which will be televised by Turner Sports on Sunday, July 1.
Selecting the rosters isn't the end of the fun in 2007, either. Concluding the All-Star balloting process, fans will have the opportunity to participate in the official voting for the Ted Williams Most Valuable Player presented by Chevrolet at the All-Star Game via the Monster.com 2007 All-Star Game MVP Vote at MLB.com.The All-Star Game will be televised nationally by FOX Sports and televised around the world by Major League Baseball International. ESPN Radio will provide exclusive national radio coverage, while MLB.com will offer extensive online coverage and MLB Radio will have exclusive play-by-play coverage of the game on the Internet. Other Angels appearing on the ballot along with Guerrero are catcher Mike Napoli, first baseman Casey Kotchman, second baseman Howie Kendrick, shortstop Orlando Cabrera, third baseman Chone Figgins and outfielders Garret Anderson and Gary Matthews Jr. While opponents continually marvel at Guerrero's ability to crush baseballs and play the game at a high level, teammates see his immense pride and desire on a daily basis. New to the Angels this season after joining with Guerrero on the AL All-Star squad last year, Matthews Jr. quickly acquired an appreciation of Guerrero's attitude as well as his remarkable talents. "Fans love him," said Matthews, who starred for the Texas Rangers last year. "Everywhere we go, fans appreciate the way he plays, the passion he plays with. Whether he's feeling great or hurting, he gives it everything he has four or five times [at the plate].
"What amazes people is when he's not at his best, he still finds a way to bring out of himself what fans come to see. He rises to the challenge. That's the mark of a truly great player -- when you're not at your best, you still find a way to give them what they want. And Vlad is truly great."Guerrero was AL co-Player of the Week for the season's opening week, sharing the award with the Yankees' Alex Rodriguez. "I'm just glad I don't have to face him," Angels pitcher Kelvim Escobar said. "It's his hand-eye coordination that makes him so good. Vladdy sees the ball and swings at it. He has fun. He loves to hit. He can look bad for one pitch and then hit the next one."
Lyle Spencer is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.