One of five players competing in the American League’s Final Vote, Mike Moustakas will learn whether he’s an All-Star at 5 p.m. Central time Thursday.
One the eve before the results were announced — his #VoteMoose hashtag was trending nationally on Twitter in the hours before voting was completed — Moustakas was taking the intrigue in stride.
“I’m just trying to be along for the ride,” he said, smiling. “The fans are taking me for a pretty good ride right now. So hopefully, it continues, and yeah, I would love to go to Miami and stick around for a couple days instead of just one.”
Moustakas, of course, is headed to Florida next week no matter what. He will compete in the Home Run Derby on Monday night at Marlins Park. He is slated to go against Minnesota’s Miguel Sano in the first round. For now, he is taking a simple approach: He just wants to hit — and see — some dingers.
“He’s a phenomenal hitter,” Moustakas said of Sano. “I’m not going to change my approach any. You still have to go out there and hit homers. That’s how you win. So [I’ll] go try and hit some homers and watch him hit some homers, and watch everybody hit some homers and just have a good time.”
Moustakas, who won the Final Vote competition in 2015, entered Thursday batting .275 with a career-high 25 homers and 54 RBIs. On Wednesday, he homered for a sixth time in eight games while the Royals completed a three-game sweep over the Seattle Mariners.
Moustakas is competing against New York’s Didi Gregorius, Texas’ Elvis Andrus, Boston’s Xander Bogaerts and Tampa Bay’s Logan Morrison for the final spot on the AL All-Star team. In updated totals released on Tuesday and Wednesday, Moustakas was leading.
“The thing about that Final Vote is all 10 guys in that thing deserve to go to the All-Star Game,” Moustakas said. “Every person deserves to go. It’s something I’m trying not to think of too much. I don’t really have any control over that.”