BALTIMORE—Trey Mancini All-Star fever is spreading. Oriole players are wearing orange T-shirts imploring fans to vote for Mancini. Perhaps you’ve seen the video with Mancini’s teammates asking for your vote. Check your email inbox because you may have gotten an email from Orioles manager Brandon Hyde, who also sports one of those shirts asking you to vote for Mancini.
It’s the first year of a new voting system designed to create more fan interest, and Mancini was 17th among outfielders in the first round of voting. He had 100,457 votes, less than half that of Houston’s Josh Reddick, who was in ninth place with 220,079 votes.
The top nine finishers among outfielders advance to the Starters’ Election.
Each team nominates a player for every position on the ballot. Mancini and Chris Davis, who is 10th among first basemen, are the only Orioles among the leaders.
“I’m not somebody who likes a ton of attention, but I really, really appreciate everything that they’re doing, and it means a lot to me,” Mancini said. “I think they’re doing a great job. I know it might be a little tougher in the market in Baltimore. We’re not as nationally known as some of the other teams.
“There are other guys on our team who are worthy of selection, too, I think. I know pitchers, the fans don’t really vote on them so there’s not much campaigning that goes on, but guys like [John] Means totally deserve a bid, too. He and a few other guys are having great years, so we’re real appreciative of the fans that are voting for us.”
It would unlikely for a team with a record like the Orioles to have multiple representatives. From 2012-16, the Orioles had at least three All-Stars in each year.
In 2017, Jonathan Schoop was added as a second baseman, and in last year’s game, Manny Machado was the starting shortstop — the last time he wore an Orioles uniform.
“I watched. I watched the Home Run Derby and the All-Star Game both years,” Mancini said. “I’ve watched it every year since I was a kid. It’s one of my favorite events every year. It’s just so cool how they do everything.”
Mancini is used to kidding from his teammates, who’ve been willing participants in the team’s promotion of him. While Mancini plays along, he hasn’t worn one of the #VoteTrey shirts.
“Some people, whenever I pass them will say, ‘Vote Trey,’ or something like that,” Mancini said. “I’m not a big fan of all the attention and stuff, but it’s an honor that they’ve had shirts made, and they’re doing this for me. I’m appreciative of my teammates and the fans here.”
The 27-year-old Mancini is batting .307, a year after he was hitting just .216 at the All-Star break. He has 15 home runs, 34 RBIs and a .920 OPS.
“I’m not sure how I’d react if it happened, especially given where I was at the All-Star break last year,” Mancini said. “Just a year later to be in the game would just be a dream come true. It’s something that I’d say I’d be proud of myself for, persevering through the toughest time of my career and actually committing to changing my mindset in a way and then making some adjustments at the plate. It would be a dream come true for me and my family.”