McCutchen hoping Martin joins All-Star crew

McCutchen hoping Martin joins All-Star crew

McCutchen hoping Martin joins All-Star crew

CHICAGO -- The day after being named, center fielder Andrew McCutchen was still glowing over his selection to a third consecutive National League All-Star team. But what has him especially stoked is taking one -- and maybe two -- of his nonpitching teammates with him to New York's Citi Field.

In 2011, pitchers Joel Hanrahan and Kevin Correia formed McCutchen's All-Star posse. Last summer only Hanrahan rode shotgun.

"Yeah, that's the nice thing: Some position players are coming with me," said McCutchen, referring to third baseman Pedro Alvarez.

But catcher Russell Martin is in line to join the NL squad if the Cardinals' Yadier Molina needs to skip next Tuesday's All-Star Game because of inflammation in his knee. Martin drew the most players' votes among NL catchers after Molina and the Giants' Buster Posey, who would start if Molina cannot.

McCutchen offers some advice for teammates Jeff Locke, Jason Grilli and Alvarez, all first-time All-Star selections: "Slow down and relish everything. It'll go by so fast."

McCutchen looks forward to experiencing his third All-Star Game perhaps as never before. The first one was too overwhelming, and last season's experience was intensified by his participation in the Home Run Derby.

"A once-in-a-lifetime experience," he said, "but once was enough. Everyone is watching you -- 40,000 in the park, millions on television, all the other players. You step up there and can't help but think, 'This'll be the only thing going on. Everyone's watching.' Tough to swing with all that pressure."

Tom Singer is a reporter for MLB.com and writes an MLBlog Change for a Nickel. He can also be found on Twitter @Tom_Singer. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.