Miguel Cabrera has never been a winner in All-Star Game balloting -- not when he was an emerging star in left field and third base with the Florida Marlins, not when he made the jump to the American League to become an MVP-caliber first baseman in Detroit.
Now that he's a third baseman again, this might be his best chance.
While Prince Fielder's jump to the AL adds another superstar name to an already star-studded field, Cabrera no longer has to worry about that. When he agreed to shift across the infield to third base, he arguably became the biggest name at the hot corner in the league -- though he'll have to contend with Rangers slugger and defensive wizard Adrian Beltre, as well as Rays star Evan Longoria, not to mention Yankees superstar Alex Rodriguez.
Whether the move finally earns Cabrera the first All-Star voting nod in his illustrious career depends on how he hits and how voters, well, vote. The first chance for Tigers fans to vote began Friday at MLB.com and tigers.com.
Fans can cast their votes for starters up to 25 times at MLB.com and all 30 club sites -- online or via your mobile device -- using the 2012 All-Star Game MLB.com Ballot until Thursday, June 28, at 11:59 p.m. ET.
Fans can also vote in person at Comerica Park beginning next homestand, starting April 30, and continuing through June 21.
Fans can also once again participate in the State Farm 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 State Farm Home Run Derby. The 2012 State Farm 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 9.
The 2012 American League and National League All-Star teams will be unveiled on Sunday, July 1, on the 2012 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 2012 All-Star Game Final Vote 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 2012 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 2012 All-Star Game will be played at Kauffman Stadium in Kansas City on Tuesday, July 10. Come to MLB.com for extensive online coverage of the All-Star Week festivities.
The 83rd 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 Sirius XM also will also provide comprehensive All-Star Week coverage. For more information, please visit allstargame.com or royals.com/asg.
Four different players have started at third base for the AL All-Stars over the last four years, ending what had been a five-year run for A-Rod. If Cabrera can put up another strong start, as well as keep exceeding expectations at third, he could become the first Tiger to start there since Hall of Famer George Kell in 1957.
Fielder, meanwhile, will try to earn the All-Star vote at first that eluded Cabrera, and give himself a chance to repeat his All-Star MVP honors from last year's Midsummer Classic. To crack the starting lineup, he'll have to beat out a field that already added Albert Pujols to compete alongside Boston's Adrian Gonzalez, Yankees star Mark Teixeira, White Sox slugger Paul Konerko and Royals sophomore stud Eric Hosmer.
Just as interesting could be the battle at catcher, where Alex Avila will try to repeat his honor as the AL's starting backstop. Unlike last year, Joe Mauer hits the ballot healthy, hoping to retake his throne, while Mike Napoli has the fame of a 30-homer season and postseason glory behind him.