Angels send three to All-Star Game
Guerrero, Colon and Anderson join AL club in Detroit
KANSAS CITY -- Vladimir Guerrero, Garret Anderson and Bartolo Colon have formed a rock-solid foundation for the first-place Angels this year and the reward is that all three veterans have been selected as American League All-Stars."Those three guys," Angels manager Mike Scioscia said, "are certainly very deserving." Guerrero, chosen as an All-Star starter by fans, has picked up where he left off in an MVP 2004 season. He went into the Sunday night game at Kansas City with a .350 batting average, 14 homers and 47 RBIs. The Angels have been on a tear since Guerrero came off the disabled list in early June. His .443 batting mark for June established an Angels record for that month. "I'm very happy, especially because this is my sixth time to go and second time with the Angels," Guerrero said. "It's quite a privilege to continue on with something that started in the National League." The All-Star Game, to be held at Detroit's Comerica Park on Tuesday, July 12 at 5 p.m. PT, will be televised nationally by FOX and televised around the world by Major League Baseball International. ESPN Radio will provide exclusive national radio coverage while MLB.com will provide extensive online coverage and MLB Radio will provide exclusive play-by-play of the game on the Internet. With a bull's-eye on his back after the MVP season, Guerrero has handled the expectations by maintaining the lofty standards he set in his first year with the Angels. "The challenge for Vlad isn't to set the bar any higher because I don't think he can do any more for our club than he did last year," Scioscia said. "I think if you maintain that bar, it's incredible. What's so impressive is that Guerrero is repeating it this year. He's a model for what being a superstar is all about. The passion he has and how hard he works bodes well for him maintaining that." Guerrero said he used to be nervous attending the All-Star Game as a lone Expo, but takes comfort in the knowledge that he'll have teammates Colon and Anderson with him in Detroit.. Colon, who has gone 11-4 with a 3.06 ERA, was chosen as a reserve by All-Star Game manager Terry Francona. This will be Colon's second All-Star appearance. His first selection came as a member of the Cleveland Indians. Colon's last outing before the All-Star teams were announced came Saturday night when he took a one-hitter into the eighth inning against Kansas City. "He has been the lead dog of that rotation," Scioscia said. "He has been terrific." Colon had a brilliant second half in 2004 and an intensified conditioning and throwing program during the winter enabled him to have a strong first half in 2005. He has won seven of his last eight decisions. "I'm very happy," Colon said. "I want to thank my teammates for all the support they've given me in helping me get to the All-Star Game." Colon said he intentionally did not make any vacation plans for the All-Star break, which served as a motivational tool. "I had it in the back of my mind, almost as a way of pushing myself," Colon said. Anderson, who went into Sunday's game hitting .309 with 10 homers and 60 RBIs, was selected as a reserve via the Player Ballot. He will be making his third All-Star appearance. He has hit over .300 in each of his last three seasons and six times in his career. "Anytime you get picked for [the All-Star Game], it's a great honor," Anderson said. "It doesn't get old. I still feel the way I felt the first time. I'm happy to go and I look forward to it." The Angels' trio could have additional incentive in trying to help the AL record a victory. As a bona fide playoff contender, an AL All-Star victory could conceivably help the Angels get home-field advantage for the World Series if the Angels should reach that level. "Anytime I play a game, I want to win," Anderson said. "I don't even care if it's only Spring Training. Otherwise, there's no sense in competing."
Robert Falkoff is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.