Quirky Pence appreciates fans' support

Quirky Pence appreciates fans' support

Quirky Pence appreciates fans' support

SAN FRANCISCO -- In less than a year since the Phillies traded him to the Giants, Hunter Pence has endeared himself to the San Francisco fan base.

With diving catches in the outfield, fiery motivational speeches to his teammates and other oddities, Pence represents a unique personality in the fabric of the Giants' 25-man roster.

NL Candidates BY THE NUMBERS
Candidate AVG HR RBI SB OPS
Desmond .280 15 49 10 .822
Freeman .307 9 56 0 .858
Gonzalez .300 14 58 0 .842
Pence .264 13 43 13 .759
Puig .394 8 19 5 1.061
* Stats entering July 11
"Yeah, I think [quirky] can be an accurate assessment," Pence said Tuesday. "I've heard unorthodox, awkward, all kinds of ways to describe me. It's just what I have and I would love to be graceful, but it's not the way I am, so I just try to compete as the person I am."

For a guy who wears one batting glove and opts for a strange batting stance -- one with which he's had success -- finding ways to be different is the norm. Recently, he's even walked to the plate to Miley Cyrus' "We Can't Stop."

"We've played it in the clubhouse a few times and some of the guys like it, so I thought it would be funny," Pence said.

Although Pence, one of five National League Final Vote candidates, has played in two All-Star Games, he said the experience never gets old.

"I would love to go and represent," he said. "All the guys are deserving to go; whoever wins, I'll be happy for."

Pence said he appreciates the votes fans are casting on his behalf.

"Fans are going out and I know it's a lot of work to vote, especially because it's unlimited voting," he said. "I want to let them know I appreciate it and tell them thank you and do my part because they've done a lot of work as well."

In order to show his gratitude, Pence has taken to Twitter to thank the fans and promote his candidacy.

He has retweeted fans who have mentioned their voting intentions, put together a video message and is even offering one fan that votes a baseball signed by the entire 2012 World Series club.

At the second update Tuesday morning, Pence remained in third in the vote, behind the Braves' Freddie Freeman and the Dodgers' Yasiel Puig. Nationals shortstop Ian Desmond is fourth, while Dodgers first baseman Adrian Gonzalez ranks fifth.

Last year's World Series opponents, the Giants and Tigers, have partnered to help their players make it to Tuesday's All-Star Game. With the partnership, Giants fans are asked to vote for Detroit reliever Joaquin Benoit. Detroit fans are asked to do the same for Pence.

Fans have continued to cast ballots in the 2013 All-Star Game MLB.com Final Vote sponsored by freecreditscore.com (#FinalVote) at a fevered pace, with more than 17 million online votes cast in the past 24 hours alone, ultimately leading to 33.2 million votes entering Tuesday's voting.

Where are those 33 million votes in these close races coming from? Which candidate is carrying your local area? Which state will play a key role in determining the final player on each All-Star Game roster? Use MLB.com's new online Final Vote data visualization map to see the geographic distribution of all 10 candidates' votes. Scroll over any county in the 50 United States to see the color-coded display to show the online vote share for each player.

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 1 p.m. PT. 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 July 12-26. 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 Friday 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 Pence, simply text message N4 to 89269. In Canada, fans should text N4 to 101010. Standard message and data rates may apply.

For the second consecutive year, the 2013 All-Star Game MLB.com Final Vote sponsored by freecreditscore.com (#FinalVote) will include a social balloting element as Twitter support from the candidates' fans over the last six hours of balloting will count toward their final vote totals. From 7 a.m.-1 p.m. PT on Thursday, any tweet that includes a designated player hashtag will be tabulated as part of the overall vote total used to determine the American League and National League winners. Fans may follow @MLB on the popular social networking service for the latest standings updates in advance of the 1 p.m. PT balloting deadline.

The fun doesn't end there, however. Fans, having already decided the starters and final player on each team, once again will have the opportunity to participate in the official voting for the Ted Williams Most Valuable Player presented by Chevrolet via the 2013 All-Star Game MVP Vote on MLB.com during the All-Star Game.

The 84th All-Star Game will be televised nationally by FOX Sports, in Canada by Rogers Sportsnet and RDS, and worldwide by partners in more than 200 countries via MLB International's independent feed. ESPN Radio and ESPN Radio Deportes will provide national radio coverage of the All-Star Game. MLB Network and SiriusXM also will also provide comprehensive All-Star Week coverage. For more information, please visit allstargame.com.

Andrew Owens is an associate reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @OwensAndrew. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.