BALTIMORE -- Rangers pitcher Yu Darvish has done his part for reliever Tanner Scheppers in the AL All-Star Final Vote competition.
"I voted 25 times already, I told my Twitter followers," Darvish said Tuesday night. "I want to make sure you guys do the same."
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"It's definitely been a cool experience," Scheppers said. "I appreciate all the support. Those other guys are all having great years. Just to be considered as a possibility for the All-Star Game is definitely a great honor."
Now in its 12th year, the 2013 All-Star Game Final Vote sponsored by freecreditscore.com gives baseball fans around the world the opportunity to select the final player on each All-Star team. Balloting began immediately following Saturday's Major League All-Star Selection Show presented by Taco Bell and ends Thursday at 3 p.m. CT. The winners will be announced on MLB.com shortly thereafter.
There will be an extra treat for fans who participate in the Final Vote online. If you are not a current MLB.TV subscriber (MLB.TV or MLB.TV Premium), you are eligible to receive a 14-day free trial of MLB.TV from Wednesday through July 26. If you are a current MLB.TV subscriber (MLB.TV or MLB.TV Premium), you will receive a 15-percent discount to the MLB.com Shop. MLB.com will send an email on Wednesday to all Final Vote voters with instructions on how to redeem the applicable offer.
Mobile voting in the U.S. and Canada is open to everyone. In the U.S., to receive the 2013 All-Star Game Final Vote sponsored by freecreditscore.com mobile ballot, text the word "VOTE" to 89269. To vote for Scheppers, simply text message A4 to 89269. In Canada, fans should text A4 to 101010. Standard message and data rates may apply.
Scheppers is doing his part to gain the nod of fans. He pitched a scoreless eighth inning in the Rangers' 7-4 victory over the Orioles on Tuesday night. That lowered his ERA to 1.84, eighth lowest among American League relievers. He remains tied for second with five relief wins and he is tied for fourth with 18 holds.
"Just another day, nothing out of the ordinary, just happy to be out there," Scheppers said.
Maybe, but the bigger concern was a heavy workload starting to catch up with him. Scheppers, going into Wednesday, is third in the American League with 43 relief appearance and tied for seventh with 44 relief innings.
But he's been efficient with his pitch counts. Scheppers is averaging 14.5 pitches per inning, which is the seventh lowest among 106 qualifying relievers in the American League. It's also the ninth-lowest average by a Rangers reliever in the past 20 years.
"I feel good," Scheppers said. "The past week or so, the workload has been spread a lot better, and the All-Star break is coming up, so everything is good."
The All-Star break will give Scheppers four days to recharge his batteries. That is unless he makes one final charge in the Final Vote. He's a reliever, so his best work is always done late in the game.
Maybe Darvish can send out a few more tweets.
T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, and follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.Less