From the first day he reported to Spring Training this year, Robinson Cano has strongly said that his mission would be to push all outside distractions aside and center his focus on helping the Yankees win games.
It is generally agreed that Cano is heading for a major payday befitting his standing as one of the top all-around talents in the game, but fans will have an early opportunity to acknowledge his efforts on the diamond.
"Hopefully, I'll continue doing the same things I've been doing every year," Cano said. "Just go out there, play hard and help the team to win games."
The All-Star ballots for the American and National Leagues were launched on Wednesday, and Cano is listed at second base.
With their lineup depleted by injuries, the Yankees have leaned on Cano to anchor their offense through the early portion of the season. Cano has appeared in three straight All-Star Games, and four overall.
"He has looked pretty good to me," Yankees manager Joe Girardi said. "I think he's pretty good at handling things. When he gets to the field, I think he's all business."
Fans can cast their votes for starters at MLB.com and all 30 club sites -- online or via your mobile device -- using the 2013 All-Star Game MLB.com Ballot until Thursday, July 4, at 11:59 p.m. ET.
Fans may submit twenty-five (25) online ballots during the voting period, but can also earn a one-time bonus of ten (10) additional online ballots. To access these additional online ballots, you must be logged into your MLB.com account when you submit any online ballot. If you do not have an MLB.com account, visit www.mlb.com and register in accordance with the enrollment instructions for a free MLB.com account.
Fans can also once again participate in the Home Run Derby Fan Poll. Fans will have the opportunity to select three players in each league whom they would most like to see participate in the Home Run Derby. The 2013 Home Run Derby -- part of Gatorade All-Star Workout Day -- will be broadcast live on ESPN, ESPN HD, ESPN Deportes and ESPN Radio in the United States beginning at 8 p.m. ET on Monday, July 15.
The 2013 AL and NL All-Star teams will be unveiled on Sunday, July 7, on the 2013 MLB All-Star Game Selection Show, televised nationally on TBS. Baseball fans around the world will then be able to select the final player on each team via the All-Star Game Final Vote sponsored by freecreditscore.com on MLB.com.
And the voting doesn't end there. The final phase of All-Star Game voting will again have fans participating in the official voting for the Ted Williams All-Star Game Most Valuable Player Award presented by Chevrolet. During the Midsummer Classic, fans will vote exclusively online at MLB.com via the 2013 All-Star Game MLB.com MVP Vote, and their voice will represent 20 percent of the official vote determining the recipient of the Arch Ward Trophy.
The 2013 All-Star Game will be played at Citi Field on Tuesday, July 16. Come to MLB.com for extensive online coverage of the All-Star Week festivities.
The 84th All-Star Game will be televised nationally by FOX Sports, in Canada by Rogers Sportsnet and RDS, and worldwide by partners in more than 200 countries via MLB International's independent feed. ESPN Radio and ESPN Radio Deportes will provide national radio coverage of the All-Star Game. MLB Network and SiriusXM also will also provide comprehensive All-Star Week coverage. For more information, please visit allstargame.com.
In-stadium balloting at Yankee Stadium begins on Thursday and continues through June 18.
Three Yankees who began the year on the disabled list -- shortstop Derek Jeter (13 previous All-Star selections), outfielder Curtis Granderson (three All-Star selections) and first baseman Mark Teixeira (two All-Star selections) -- are on the All-Star ballot.
MLB executive vice president of business Tim Brosnan explained after Wednesday's kickoff news conference at City Hall that Jeter's inclusion was decided before April 18, when it was announced Jeter is out until at least the All-Star break.
"Jeter's an icon," Brosnan said. "The ballots get printed before you know he's not going to play in the All-Star Game. The ballots are lined up prior to (the setback announcement). If you remember a while back, Jeter said he was going to start, he was going to play Opening Day. He got pushed back.
"If he were playing well and the fans wanted him to play, you'd have to give him the opportunity to let him play. I mean, he's an icon in baseball, he's an icon in New York, and has arguably been one of the great shortstops right through last year. You want the best players to be able to play if they're available.
The Yankees are also represented by third baseman Kevin Youkilis, a three-time All-Star with the Red Sox, and outfielder Ichiro Suzuki, a 10-time All-Star with the Mariners. Brosnan said that Alex Rodriguez was not included on the ballot because it was known in advance that he would not be available to play by the end of the first half.
Designated hitter Travis Hafner, outfielder Brett Gardner and catcher Chris Stewart round out the Yankees' representation on the ballot and are all seeking their first All-Star appearances.