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Blue Jays fans close to voting Justin Smoak into the MLB All-Star Game

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Ian Hunter Jun 29, 2017 2:40 am 345

Starting first baseman for the American League All-Star team: Justin Smoak.

The more you read it, the more you say it, the weirder it feels. But it’s getting closer to a reality as Smoak could represent the Toronto Blue Jays at the 88th MLB All-Star Game in Miami on July 11th.

Smoak is the standout offensive player for the Blue Jays this season and the club is doing everything in its power to ensure his spot on the roster by pushing the “Smoak the Vote” campaign.

Smoak’s teammates showed their support by sporting t-shirts from the campaign as the Blue Jays took batting practice earlier this week.

Over the past few weeks, the campaign has gained a tremendous amount of momentum. Back on June 6th, Smoak wasn’t even on the initial Top 5 voting for American League first baseman. In the weeks since, Smoak propelled himself within the top two vote-getters at his position.

As it sits right now, Smoak trails the Kansas City Royals’ first baseman Eric Hosmer on the All-Star ballot by 71,654 votes. That may sound like a lot, but considering the Blue Jays’ fan base draws from over 35 million potential fans, it wouldn’t be shocking if Smoak surpasses Hosmer by day’s end.

This year’s AL first baseman ballot is bizarre one; unlike the typical household names like Chris Davis and Jose Abreu, the top of the list consists of breakout hitters like Smoak along with the Oakland A’s Yonder Alonso.

Don’t underestimate the power of Blue Jays fans; they famously voted in Steve Delabar in the All-Star Final Vote back in 2013 and also flexed their muscle by propelling Michael Saunders to last year’s Midsummer Classic.

Smoak is having a career year with the Blue Jays, having matched his career-high in home runs with 20. The most impressive part? We aren’t even at the halfway point of the 2017 season and Smoak has already matched his career-high in home runs and will easily surpass that total in the coming days.

Through 75 games with the Blue Jays, Smoak is hitting a home run for every 12.6 at bats he takes. That means the 30-year-old is on pace to hit 49 home runs, which would be about 25 home runs more than anyone could have expected from the Blue Jays’ first baseman.

If Smoak is voted in, it would be the first time a Blue Jays first baseman starts the Midsummer Classic since 2003, when Carlos Delgado represented the blue birds.

One way or another, Smoak will make his way to Miami for the All-Star Game. The question is whether he’ll win that starting spot or get voted in as a reserve by his peers and the All-Star Game coaches.

Fans can “Smoak the Vote” by submitting their final All-Star ballot until 11:59pm EST tonight and the results will be revealed on Sunday at 7 pm ET during the All-Star Selection Show.

See also

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Ian Hunter
Toronto Blue Jays blogger/writer, GIF maker, baseball moustache aficionado, runner, beer admirer, proud dad.

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