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Castillo looking for first AL All-Star bid

Castillo seeks All-Star bid

MINNEAPOLIS -- Luis Castillo has already had quite a memorable 2007 season.

The Twins second baseman set a record for consecutive games without an error at his position at 143 games, breaking Hall of Famer Ryne Sandberg's previous streak of 123.

But the record aside, Castillo's season certainly would be made a bit sweeter by earning a bid to the 78th All-Star Game on July 10 in San Francisco.

A three-time All-Star in the National League, Castillo is looking for his first bid in the AL. Castillo currently sits fourth in the balloting for American League second basemen behind the Tigers' Placido Polanco, the Yankees' Robinson Cano and the Red Sox Dustin Pedroia.

Besides his defense, Castillo also has impressed at the plate this season. The second baseman has a .305 batting average with 39 runs scored and 12 RBIs.

In-stadium balloting has ended at the Metrodome, so Twins fans can cast their votes for starters exclusively at MLB.com. Fans can vote up to 25 times with the Monster 2007 All-Star Online Ballot at MLB.com and all 30 club sites until June 28 at 10:59 p.m. CT.

But Castillo isn't the only Twins player whose All-Star wishes could be answered by the fans. Three of his teammates also rank among the top-five vote-getters at their respective positions.

Twins first baseman Justin Morneau currently sits second in the balloting for first baseman behind Boston's David Ortiz. The reigning American League MVP certainly has put up some stellar numbers to start '07. He ranks second in the AL in home runs with 20 and is tied for fifth in the AL in RBIs with 57.

Joe Mauer sits fourth among catchers behind Detroit's Ivan Rodriguez, New York's Jorge Posada and Boston's Jason Varitek. The defending AL batting champion hit .353 before beginning a five-week stint on the disabled list May 5, but got off to a slow start upon his return to the lineup. Still, in the team's recent six-game road trip, Mauer hit .333 (8-for-24) with nine RBIs and two home runs to raise his season average to .319.

Center fielder Torii Hunter ranks fifth among outfielders, with the top three vote-getters earning a spot on the team. Anaheim's Vladimir Guerrero, Detroit's Magglio Ordonez, Seattle's Ichiro Suzuki and Boston's Manny Ramirez all have received more votes than Hunter.

But besides his trademark defense, Hunter has also been putting on a display offensively. He's hitting .306 on the season, while he's ranked sixth in the AL in home runs (15) and tied for fifth with Morneau in RBIs (57).

All-Star Game Coverage
Fans will again be given the opportunity to cast an All-Star vote immediately following the 2007 MLB All-Star Game Selection Show Presented by Chevrolet, which will be televised by Turner Sports on Sunday, July 1. Baseball fans around the world will be able to select the final player on each All-Star team via the Monster.com 2007 All-Star Final Vote.

Selecting the rosters isn't the end of the fun in 2007, either. Concluding the All-Star balloting process, fans will have the opportunity to participate in the official voting for the Ted Williams Most Valuable Player presented by Chevrolet at the All-Star Game via the Monster.com 2007 All-Star Game MVP Vote at MLB.com.

The All-Star Game will be televised nationally by FOX Sports and televised around the world by Major League Baseball International. ESPN Radio will provide exclusive national radio coverage, while MLB.com will offer extensive online coverage and MLB Radio will have exclusive play-by-play coverage of the game on the Internet.

Kelly Thesier 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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