NEW YORK - A.J. Pierzynski is having an All-Star caliber season and said he's deserving, but the White Sox catcher is skeptical about his chances of making the team.
"It's the ultimate personal reward as a player to be voted as an All-Star, to go there and enjoy the game,'' Pierzynski said Saturday. "At the same time I know how it works. It's a popularity contest and I know I'm probably not going to win it and I'm not going to go.''
Pierzynski, who hit two homers in Friday's 14-7 win at Yankee Stadium, leads major league catchers with 45 RBI. He's second with 14 homers and fifth with a .285 batting average.
"I've had good first halfs before and not gone so I'm not going to put a whole lot of stock into it,'' said Pierzynski, who was an AL All-Star in 2002 and '06. "Or get my hopes up. I think I deserve it but if not it's OK. I'm not going to lose any sleep over it. The biggest thing for me is my kids are old enough to understand. Last time I went my daughter wasn't even a year old. My son is five, daughter is seven, so that would be cool, they would enjoy it. But it's also nice to get home for four days and be able to relax and get away from the game for a while.''
The rosters for the All-Star Game will be announced Sunday. In addition to starting lineups, reserves and pitching staff, the five Final Vote candidates for the last spot on each team will be announced.
"I'd love to go but I know how it works. I know how the votes go. The fans vote, and they pick who they pick and the players get the second vote. As we know in every publication I usually don't win those players votes except for the other things. But it's fine.''
Pierzynski was voted the most hated player in baseball in a Men's Journal survey of 100 players that came out on June 13.
I've had some discussions with my wife and like I said I think I deserve it, but there are a lot of guys who are deserving who don't get to go.''