Cards' ASG vets don't take Classic for granted

Holliday, Molina, Peralta still soak in All-Star experience

Cards' ASG vets don't take Classic for granted

CINCINNATI -- Although their three first-time All-Star teammates did come seeking advice on how to best soak in the experience, St. Louis' three veteran All-Stars -- Matt Holliday, Yadier Molina and Jhonny Peralta -- all made one thing clear about their own stay in Cincinnati this week: They, too, were just as giddy to be a part of Major League Baseball's summer showcase.

No National League player on this year's All-Star Game presented by T-Mobile roster has been selected to the Midsummer Classic more times than Holliday or Molina, each of whom are All-Stars for a seventh time. In Molina's case, he is an All-Star for the seventh straight season.

"Some people get vacations, but some of us go get the opportunity to be around future Hall of Famers," Molina said on Monday, his 33rd birthday. "You can't take it for granted, because every year is different for you and your family. To be around here and play this game, it's a great honor."

Peralta, a third-time All-Star, finds himself in the starting lineup for the first time. He'll bat seventh -- squeezed between DH Anthony Rizzo (Cubs) and left fielder Joc Pederson (Dodgers). The starting assignment comes fewer than two years after Peralta found his reputation tarnished by a 50-game suspension for his connection to the Miami-area Biogenesis clinic.

"I don't want to say I've done everything I want to do, but I feel happy with what I've done, and fans in St. Louis have appreciated what I've done," Peralta said of proving himself since. "I'm excited to be here at the All-Star Game, and I want to say thank you to the fans in St. Louis who voted me to be here."

Molina expects to get to catch at least one member of his current pitching staff, as the team is also represented by Michael Wacha, Carlos Martinez and Trevor Rosenthal in Cincinnati. What's not so clear is what type of reception he'll receive in a city that hasn't welcomed him warmly since a 2010 fracas between the Cardinals and Reds.

"Whatever they decide to do, I don't really care," Molina said of the possibility of a tepid reception. "They boo me a bunch of times, but I don't care. That doesn't bother me. I've got my family here, so that's all that matters."

Molina hasn't won Reds fans over, either, with his production in their home park. In 73 career games at Great American Ball Park, Molina has hit .319 with 19 doubles, 10 homers and 38 RBIs.

Holliday, a fan-elected starter for the first time in his career, won't be participating in Tuesday's game but embraced the chance to bring along oldest sons, Jackson and Ethan, to another All-Star Week.

"I never take this for granted and would never miss it," said Holliday, who hopes to come off the DL on Friday. "If I get a chance, I'll be here. It's a fun event and something I take a lot of pride in. I'm very humbled to be here. It's a chance to be with the best of the best. "

During the All-Star Game presented by T-Mobile in Cincinnati on Tuesday, fans can once again visit MLB.com to submit their choice for the Ted Williams Most Valuable Player Award presented by Chevrolet. Voting exclusively at MLB.com, online and via their mobile devices in the 2015 All-Star Game MVP Vote presented by Chevrolet, the fans' collective voice will represent 20 percent of the overall vote that determines the recipient of the Arch Ward Trophy.

MLB.TV Premium subscribers will be able to live stream the All-Star Game via MLB.TV through FOX's participating video providers. Access will be available across more than 400 supported MLB.TV platforms, including the award-winning MLB.com At Bat app.

The 86th Midsummer Classic will be televised nationally by FOX Sports (coverage begins 7 p.m. ET), in Canada by Rogers Sportsnet and RDS, and worldwide by partners in more than 160 countries. ESPN Radio and ESPN Radio Deportes will provide exclusive national radio coverage of the All-Star Game. MLB Network and SiriusXM will also provide comprehensive All-Star Week coverage. For more information, please visit allstargame.com.

Jenifer Langosch is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, By Gosh, It's Langosch, follow her on Twitter @LangoschMLB, like her Facebook page Jenifer Langosch for Cardinals.com and listen to her podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.