NEW YORK -- Robinson Cano and Mariano Rivera are locked in for the honors of crossing borough lines in their road gray uniforms once more this year, helping to represent the American League for the All-Star Game at Citi Field on Tuesday, July 16.
Cano stands tall as the Junior Circuit's fan-elected starting second baseman, finishing with 5,369,141 votes and having led at his position for every balloting checkpoint into Saturday's announcement by Major League Baseball.
It is the fifth career All-Star selection and the fourth straight for the sweet-swinging 30-year-old, who has also been selected as the AL captain for the State Farm Home Run Derby.
"It feels great. I want to thank God and the fans that dedicated their time to vote for me to start this year's All-Star Game," Cano said. "I can't tell you how much I appreciate it. There's a lot of great second basemen in the American League, and I am thankful to the fans for voting and appreciating the way that I've been playing this year. It makes it that much more special that the game and the events surrounding it are being held here in New York City."
American League roster
|C||Joe Mauer, MIN|
|1B||Chris Davis, BAL|
|2B||Robinson Cano, NYY|
|3B||Miguel Cabrera, DET|
|SS||J.J. Hardy, BAL|
|OF||Mike Trout, LAA|
|OF||Adam Jones, BAL|
|OF||Jose Bautista, TOR|
|DH||David Ortiz, BOS|
|RHP||Clay Buchholz*, BOS|
|LHP||Brett Cecil, TOR|
|RHP||Bartolo Colon@, OAK|
|RHP||Jesse Crain*, CWS|
|RHP||Yu Darvish, TEX|
|RHP||Felix Hernandez, SEA|
|RHP||Hisashi Iwakuma, SEA|
|RHP||Justin Masterson, CLE|
|RHP||Joe Nathan, TEX|
|LHP||Glen Perkins@, MIN|
|RHP||Mariano Rivera, NYY|
|LHP||Chris Sale, CWS|
|RHP||Max Scherzer, DET|
|RHP||Justin Verlander, DET|
|C||Jason Castro, HOU|
|C||Salvador Perez, KC|
|1B||Prince Fielder, DET|
|2B||Jason Kipnis, CLE|
|2B||Dustin Pedroia, BOS|
|2B||Ben Zobrist, TB|
|SS||Jhonny Peralta, DET|
|3B||Manny Machado, BAL|
|OF||Nelson Cruz, TEX|
|OF||Alex Gordon, KC|
|OF||Torii Hunter, DET|
|DH||Edwin Encarnacion, TOR|
Rivera, of course, needs little introduction as the game's all-time saves leader. The 43-year-old closer was a virtual lock to receive his 13th career All-Star selection as he completes his farewell season, having announced his upcoming retirement this spring.
"It's always a privilege to be part of the All-Star team," Rivera said. "It's wonderful. Thank God for that. I have to do something good. I'm going to enjoy it. You have to enjoy it and make sure that you get the best out of it."
Yet it is no honorary nod for Rivera, who was selected through the voting by the players, coaches and managers. Returning from a career-threatening right knee injury suffered last May, Rivera and his famous cutter have been just as dominant as ever.
Rivera's precision has allowed him to compile a 1.39 ERA, converting 29 out of 30 save opportunities. He has reached the 25-saves plateau for the 16th time, and he's hoping to protect one last ninth-inning lead for the AL.
"The fact that I went through all that adversity and I'm standing here now talking about the All-Star Game, it's a blessing," Rivera said. "It's a privilege. After all that, just being named an All-Star again, it just feels wonderful. Thank God for that."
Cano, meanwhile, has been the centerpiece of a Yankees lineup that was missing a great deal of star power through the first half. Even lacking bold-faced protection, Cano is batting .293 with 20 home runs and 58 RBIs in 88 games, reaching the 20-homer plateau for the fifth straight season.
The fun will start a day early for Cano, who is looking forward to wiping away the memories of a disappointing effort last summer in Kansas City. Cano and his father -- former big leaguer Jose Cano -- will be trying to build on the 2011 Home Run Derby championship they won at Phoenix's Chase Field.
"I've done it away twice," Cano said. "Now you do it at home where you have your crowd and the greatest fans in the world get a chance to see you swinging in the Home Run Derby."
Now in its 12th year, the 2013 All-Star Game Final Vote sponsored by freecreditscore.com gives baseball fans around the world the opportunity to select the final player on each All-Star team. Yankees reliever David Robertson is one of five AL Final Vote candidates.
From now to Thursday until 4 p.m. ET, be sure to return to MLB.com and cast your sponsored by freecreditscore.com for the final player for each league's All-Star roster.
Mobile voting in the U.S. and Canada is open to everyone. In the U.S., to receive the 2013 All-Star Game Final Vote sponsored by freecreditscore.com mobile ballot, text the word "VOTE" to 89269. To vote for Robertson, simply text "A3" to 89269.
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.
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.
If Cano and Rivera are the only Yankees' All-Star representatives to make the trek to Queens, it will be the Bombers' smallest group attending a Midsummer Classic since 1993, when Wade Boggs and Jimmy Key were the only Yankees named to the AL squad.