All-Star Hamilton to be joined by three 'mates
Wilson, Beltre and Young will be with slugger in Phoenix
ARLINGTON -- Josh Hamilton, who was elected to his fourth consecutive All-Star Game, will be joined by Texas teammates C.J. Wilson, Adrian Beltre and Michael Young.
Hamilton edged out Red Sox outfielder Jacoby Ellsbury for the last spot in the AL outfield. Ellsbury made a run at Hamilton's spot but fell just 36,727 votes short. That was far and away the closest vote at any position in either league.
Hamilton missed six weeks with a broken bone in his right arm. But he is still hitting .301 with 10 home runs, 40 RBIs and a .554 slugging percentage in 46 games.
"I feel like I've had some good times since I've been back," Hamilton said. "I was looking at numbers today when they had the selection show, and they were pretty comparable, not too far behind the other guys."
Had Ellsbury garnered enough support to start, Hamilton still would have been an All-Star. He finished fifth in player voting in the AL outfield behind Ellsbury, Matt Joyce and starters Jose Bautista and Curtis Granderson.
The 82nd Major League Baseball All-Star Game will be played on July 12 at Chase Field in Phoenix. It will be televised nationally by FOX Sports, in Canada by Rogers Sportsnet and Sportsnet HD and Le Reseau des Sports, with pregame ceremonies beginning at 7 p.m. CT. ESPN Radio and ESPN Radio Deportes will provide exclusive national radio coverage. MLB Network, MLB.com and Sirius XM also will provide comprehensive All-Star Game coverage.
Beltre received his second consecutive All-Star Game selection at third base. He finished second in the fan voting behind Alex Rodriguez but, for the second consecutive year, he finished first in the players voting. Beltre received 530 player votes while Rodriguez received 281.
"That was nice. It means a lot that the players picked me," Beltre said. "That's an honor a player really likes, being picked by other players."
Beltre made his first All-Star Game last season for the Red Sox, striking out in his only plate appearance. He entered Sunday's game hitting .265 with 14 home runs and leads the league in games played.
Wilson will be making his first All-Star appearance. He was selected by Rangers manager Ron Washington, who will be the AL's skipper.
"I'm happy for him," Rangers pitching coach Mike Maddux said. "It's a testament to his work ethic and his will, just being a professional and elevating his game."
Washington said that he likes the fact that the left-hander has previous experience as a reliever, since that could come in handy in the All-Star Game setting.
"C.J. is very deserving," Washington said. "There was not a whole lot of choices in left-handed relievers. C.J. has the experience of doing that, and he's deserving, as far as I'm concerned."
Wilson was 8-3 with a 3.14 ERA going into his 18th start on Sunday night against the Marlins. Washington said Rangers pitcher Alexi Ogando was also considered.
"Of course Ogando was a thought," Washington said. "The guy's had a super first half, but I was allowed one guy at that point, and C.J. was the guy."
Ogando is 8-3 with a 2.86 ERA in 16 games in his first season as a starter. But Washington also likes the idea of Wilson as a possibility late-inning left-handed reliever in the game.
"What can you do?" Ogando said. "The only thing I can control is work hard and do my job."
Young will be making his seventh All-Star Game appearance. He was elected as the backup designated hitter but he likely be used in the similar role as he does for Washington now as a utility infielder.
"I think Wash knows that I'll do anything I can to help him out in that game," Young said. "Whatever it takes to have him think that he has put the pieces in place to win the game, I'll be available and I'll be ready."
Washington may want to make sure Young is playing at the end of the game, as he is the only player in the game's history with two game-winning RBI in his team's final at-bat. He won Most Valuable Player honors in 2006 after stroking a game-winning two-run triple off Trevor Hoffman.
Fans, having already decided the starters, this week had the opportunity to select the final player on each All-Star team. Balloting began immediately following Sunday's Major League All-Star Selection Show presented by Taco Bell and continued until 3 p.m. CT on Thursday, July 7. The winners were announced on MLB.com shortly thereafter.
On July 12, fans once again will have the opportunity to participate in the official voting for the Ted Williams Most Valuable Player presented by Chevy via the 2011 All-Star Game MVP Vote Sponsored by Sprint on MLB.com during the All-Star Game.
Louie Horvath is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.