If you’ve followed much of what I’ve written about baseball on this blog in the last couple years, you’ll remember that I have not been overly-complimentary towards Twins outfielder Delmon Young. The first couple years we had him, he didn’t hit very well, and in the field he seemed afraid of the ball and afraid of the wall – not something you want in a major league outfielder.

This year has been different. Delmon came to spring training slim and strong. His personal-life problems were behind him and he was able to concentrate on his game. His hitting improved vastly, and his fielding also was getting better.

Delmon has improved so much this year that he was nominated for the “final vote” to get on the All Star Team. That means he is one of only five position players in the American League who still has a chance to get on the All Star Team. Until this year that would have been unthinkable. But Delmon is driving in runs like few have ever done, and his fielding isn’t too embarrassing any more, either.

So for the first time in my life, I have now participated in the “Final Vote”, and my vote went to Delmon! I can hardly say that, seeing as how I criticized him so heavily in the past. It’s difficult to endorse someone who used to play so pitifully. But Delmon has made a believer out of me. I have been told that Delmon is still so young, and he has all the tools to make for a Hall-of-Fame career, so we must be patient with him. My patience had almost run out before this year. Now those HoF tools are becoming apparent.

Delmon may not make it to the All Star Game this year, but I think it won’t be long before he will be an All Star regular.