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Iguchi cracks top five in All-Star voting

Iguchi cracks top five in All-Star voting

CHICAGO -- It didn't take a translator for Tadahito Iguchi to convey his thoughts as to where his focus for the season currently falls, smiling and shaking his head when asked about possibly being selected for the All-Star Game in Detroit.

"I don't think about the All-Star Game," said Iguchi through his translator. "It would be an honor, but that's for other people to decide. I'm not playing to get into the All-Star Game.

"The only reason I'm trying to do my best every day is to help my team go as far as possible," Iguchi added.

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Maybe the rookie from Japan should start giving a few extra thoughts to the July 12 Midsummer Classic. In the latest round of voting, Iguchi cracked the top five at second base for the first time. He still trails Baltimore's Brian Roberts, Texas' Alfonso Soriano, Boston's Mark Bellhorn and the Yankees' Tony Womack, but Iguchi's .291 average, five home runs and 29 RBIs only put him behind Roberts and Soriano, statistically.

Iguchi has 172,852 votes. Roberts leads with 921,377.

Outfielder Scott Podsednik also moved up a spot to 10th in the outfield balloting with 292,999. If more people watched Podsednik on a consistent basis, they might appreciate his game and give him greater support. Podsednik leads baseball with 31 stolen bases, while carrying a .286 average.

Paul Konerko dropped to fourth at first base, with Texas' Mark Teixeira leapfrogging to second, while Frank Thomas stays steady at the designated hitter's fifth spot. Despite only having 14 at-bats entering the week, Thomas appreciates the support he has received.

"It's a great feeling," Thomas said. "It's always great when the fans cheer you on, and I'd always rather be cheered than booed."

White Sox fans only have six more days to vote for their favorites at U.S. Cellular Field. In-stadium balloting closes on the South Side on Sunday, June 19.

Scott Merkin is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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