BALTIMORE — Los Angeles Angels outfielder Mike Trout has consistently maintained that he is not consumed by the subject of the All-Star Game.
The 2009 Philadelphia Inquirer South Jersey player of the year from Millville may have to adjust his stance today.
That's when the American League and National League all-star teams will be announced during an 11 a.m. show on TBS.
All but one of the 34 spots for each of the teams will be announced.
Trout, who will turn 21 on Aug. 7, missed most of spring training with an illness and shoulder injury. He began the season in the minors but was called up April 28, with the Angels at 6-14.
Almost from the start, he energized the team and has taken the league by storm.
Entering the weekend, he was leading the AL with a .345 average. Trout also had eight home runs, 32 RBIs, and a league-leading 21 stolen bases in 54 games, and the Angels were 43-33.
With what he has done statistically and the excitement he has generated, Trout's teammates definitely expect that he will participate in the All-Star Game July 10 in Kansas City.
"I'd be surprised if he is not there," outfielder Torii Hunter said before a game last week at Baltimore's Camden Yards.
Trout has been a topic of conversation for a trifecta of honors — the All-Star Game, rookie of the year, and most valuable player.
It's a subject he'd love to bypass, but even he can't totally ignore it.
"If I go out there and keep putting up good numbers and if I get picked rookie of the year, or for the all-star team, that is great, a dream come true," Trout said. "Like I say, I stay within myself and not try to do too much, and once I start to worry about that stuff, that is when I try to do too much."
Trout wasn't on the fan all-star ballot and he won't be named a starter. There are 11 other position-player spots beyond the starters on the AL team, nine picked by the players and two by manager Ron Washington of Texas. In addition, after the first 33 players are picked, Washington will submit five names, and one of those players will earn the final spot based on online voting.
Angels manager Mike Scioscia said it wouldn't surprise him if Trout made the team or got left off. Scioscia isn't a fan of how the teams are selected.
"There are a lot of guys on our team going to get serious consideration and I think Mike deserves serious consideration," Scioscia said. "But the whole process is flawed."
Last year the AL team had seven outfielders. In the most recent voting the top three outfielders were Josh Hamilton of Texas, Curtis Granderson of the New York Yankees, and Jose Bautista of Toronto. It would be difficult to find three or four other outfielders having a better season than Trout.
One rule that could factor into the selection is that each team must have one representative.
When asked if Trout has his vote, teammate and nine-time all-star Albert Pujols said, "Definitely. I think he's got everybody's vote here, him and (Mark) Trumbo."
In a little more than two full months, Trout has impacted the game in a variety of ways. Even though he's not known as a power hitter and bats leadoff, Trout was sixth in the AL with a .944 OPS, a statistic that combines slugging percentage and on-base percentage.
Trout has made a strong argument in his usual way — without actually speaking. today he may finally willingly address the subject of his all-star candidacy.
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