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Alex Avila voted All-Star starting catcher, Verlander, Cabrera, Valverde also selected

A few weeks ago it seemed like Tigers starting catcher Alex Avila had no shot at starting the All-Star Game. He was several hundred thousand votes behind Yankee Russell Martin in the fan voting. But with a "#VoteAvila" campaign push on Twitter and beyond -- and thanks to an awesome image by Samara Pearlstein that you can see on our sidebar -- the voters in Detroit and beyond got to work righting the wrong.

It culminated this afternoon when Avila was unexpectedly announced as the American League's starting catcher during the selection show.

Avila was voted in the starter by the fans in just his first season as the Tigers' starting catcher and second "full" season in the MLB. He is batting .299 with a .369 on-base percentage, .531 slugging average, 10 home runs and 3 stolen bases. He's thrown out 22 attempted base thieves for a 37.9% success rate.

This feat is all the more impressive when you consider Avila didn't even begin catching until final year in college. Talk about a life-changing decision! Congrats Alex, now you're an all-star.

Other Tigers selected to the team:

Miguel Cabrera -- The players voted for Cabrera. It is hard to argue with Adrian Gonzalez as the starter, but Cabrera is currently batting .329 with 17 home runs. This is his sixth All-Star Game.

Justin Verlander -- Another players' selection, Verlander will likely not be eligible for the game because he is currently scheduled to pitch next Sunday. His splits for the month of June feature an undefeated record and ERA under 1. Unbelievable he is. This is his fourth ASG.

Jose Valverde -- Saves may be over rated, but with players and managers they still carry a lot of weight. So it's not a big surprise to see Valverde was a manager's selection to the team. He is third in the AL in saves with at a perfect 19 for 19. Or maybe AL manager Ron Washington recalls that Valverde struck out the side during his 2010 appearance. This is Valverde's third ASG.

Notable Tigers "snubs" -- Neither of these are big surprises, though both would make deserving all stars. Victor Martinez has a .335 batting average, which is good for second in the AL and third in the majors. But as he profiles as a DH it's not a big surprise. You can vote for him in the final vote. So do your best #VoteAvila impersonation and get Martinez into the All-Star Game!

Another snub, Jhonny Peralta. He's actually batting better than the Indians' Asdrubal Cabrera -- the player's pick -- in all but RBI. His average, on-base percentage and slugging are higher than Cabrera. His HR are tied. He does trail by an RBI. Cabrera, though, is a better fielder.

Complete rosters after the jump.

American League


C- Alex Avila

1B: Adrian Gonzalez

2B: Robinson Cano

SS: Derek Jeter

3B: Alex Rodriguez

OF: Jose Bautista

OF: Curtis Granderson

OF: Josh Hamilton

DH: David Ortiez


Chris Perez RP

Jose Valverde RP

Aaron Crow SP

Josh Beckett SP

Mariano Rivera RP

Gio Gonzalez SP

Felix Hernandez SP

Justin Verlander SP

Brandon League RP

David Price SP

James Shields SP

Jered Weaver SP

C.J. Wilson SP


C Matt Weiters

OF Jacoby Ellsbury

OF Carlos Quentin

SS Asdrubal Cabrera

1B Miguel Cabrera

2B Howie Kendrick

OF Michael Cuddyer

C Russell Martin

OF Matt Joyce

3B Adrian Beltre

DH Michael Young

National League


C- McCann
1B Fielder
2B Weeks
SS Reyes
3B Polanco
OF Braun
OF Kemp
OF Berkman


Jonny Venters RP

Clayton Kershaw SP

Cole Hamels SP

Jair Jurrjens SP

Joel Hanrahan RP

Heath Bell RP

Matt Cain SP

Roy Halladay SP

Tim Lincecum SP

Brian Wilson RP

Ryan Vogelsong (SP, San Francisco Giants),

Cliff Lee SP

Tyler Clippard RP


OF Justin Upton
3B Chipper Jones
SS Starlin Castro
2B Brandon Phillips
1B Joey Votto
OF Jay Bruce
SS Troy Tulowitzki
1B Gaby Sanchez
OF Hunter Pence
OF Carlos Beltran
OF Matt Holliday
C Yadier Molina