Could use the rest
Swisher squeaks past Youkilis
All-Star campaign pays off for Yankee
TORONTO — In what Major League Baseball officials said was the closest vote ever, Yankees right fielder Nick Swisher edged Kevin Youkilis for the final spot on the American League roster in the All-Star Game.
Swisher received 9.8 million Internet votes in four days to beat Youkilis (whose total was not revealed) in what was said to be the tightest race in the nine years of the Final Vote competition.
Paul Konerko (White Sox), Michael Young (Rangers), and Delmon Young (Twins) trailed behind.
Youkilis is hitting .292 with 17 home runs, 55 RBIs, and a .409 on-base percentage. Swisher went into last night’s game in Seattle hitting .298 with 14 home runs, 48 RBIs, and a .376 OBP. He is an All-Star for the first time, making eight the number of Yankees named this year to manager Joe Girardi’s squad.
Swisher was an active participant in the marketing campaign mounted by the Yankees, shooting a video for the team’s website, seeking votes from his 1.2 million followers on Twitter, and soliciting celebrity endorsements.
Youkilis was far less involved in the process. Youkilis, a two-time All-Star, could use the time off. He came out of Tuesday’s game with an injured right ankle and limped off the field after making the final out of Wednesday’s game.
In the National League, Reds first baseman Joey Votto won his first All-Star spot, receiving 13.7 million votes, beating Washington’s Ryan Zimmerman, Colorado’s Carlos Gonzalez, and Atlanta’s Billy Wagner. Padres reliever Heath Bell was a candidate before being chosen as an injury replacement.
The All-Star third baseman is 3 for 22 in six games this month with one RBI and one run. The short skid has dropped his batting average from .349 to .334.
For his career, however, Beltre has hit .281 in the second half of the season with an .821 OPS. He has hit .268 in the first half of seasons with a .755 OPS.
Lowrie started at shortstop for the Spinners. Sox manager Terry Francona said Wednesday that Lowrie would get time at shortstop, second base, and third base during his rehab assignment, which can last up to 20 days. Lowrie is 2 for 4 with three walks in two games for Lowell.
In four starts for Brewster, Ranaudo has allowed only seven hits and one unearned run over 23 2/3 innings. He has walked seven and struck out 22.
An elbow injury dropped Ranaudo out of the first round. The Sox selected him with the 39th overall pick.
Ranaudo and his adviser, Scott Boras, are seeking a contract in line with what one of the first 10 picks would receive.