Nick Swisher continues to run strong in the American League All-Star balloting.
Once again this week, Swisher finds himself in fifth place among AL outfielders. The top-three vote-getters will be the AL's starters for the July 13 game at the home of the California, er Anaheim, er Los Angeles Angels (unless they change their name again in the next two weeks).
Ichiro Suzuki of the Seattle Mariners and Josh Hamilton of the Texas Rangers are far out in front and appear to be locks for two of the three starting outfield posts. Carl Crawford of the Tampa Bay Rays is third, followed by Nelson Cruz of the Texas Rangers and Swisher.
Even if Swisher ends up fifth, it's still possible he could start as all four of the top vote-getters have at one time or another been injured this season.
More likely than not, Swisher won't be in the top three and he won't be an AL starter. But even if that doesn't mean he won't be an all-star. After the fans select the starters, the manager gets to make the rest of the selections. All-star tradition dictates that the manager is the one who led his team to the pennant the previous season. That means that the AL manager is none other than Joe Girardi of the World Champion New York Yankees.
It's quite possible Girardi will reward Swisher not only for being the catalyst of last year's title, but for having such a great season in 2010. Despite being in a short slump, Swisher still has raised his batting average 40 points over his norm, without experiencing any dropoff in power.
Voting ends at 11:59 p.m. on July 1. A former Parkersburg resident, Fisher Pence - a 1996 graduate of Parkersburg High School -has garnered more votes for his favorite player, Swisher, than any other person promoting an athlete.. Pence works in the entertainment business in Los Angeles and spent some time with Swisher during the weekend series with the Dodgers. Voting is at mlb.com and each person can vote up to 25 times.
Should Swisher make the All-Star squad, his would be a historic selection.
In 1976, his father, Steve Swisher, while a member of the Chicago Cubs, was selected to the National League All-Star team.
Should Nick make the AL roster, the Swishers would find themselves in rather select company as only 12 other father-son combinations in baseball history have been selected as all-stars.
For the record, they are Sandy Alomar, Sandy Alomar Jr. and Roberto Alomar; Felipe and Moises Alou; Gus and Buddy Bell; Ray Boone, and Bob Boone; Bob Boone and sons Bret and Aaron Boone; Bobby and Barry Bonds; Cecil and Prince Fielder; Ken Griffey Sr. and Jr.; Jim and Mike Hegan; Randy and Todd Hundley; Vern and Vance Law; and Garry Matthews Sr. and Jr.
We'll know soon if the Swishers will find themselves on that prestigious list.
That would be quite a feat.
Contact Dave Poe at firstname.lastname@example.org