His left leg aching after absorbing yet another foul tip, Alcides Escobar limped into the Royals clubhouse, a boisterous room that had settled down more than an hour after a 6-1 victory over the Twins. Escobar played a critical role in the triumph: He ripped a two-run double to open the scoring, and repeated the feat to bookend his night.

At the site of this month’s All-Star Game, Escobar offered a reminder why he should be considered for selection. The fans vote belongs to Yankees star Derek Jeter. Escobar’s hopes belong in the hands of his peers, should the players vote him ahead of contenders like Chicago’s Alexei Ramirez or Los Angeles’ Erick Aybar.

The odds are long, but Escobar still yearns for an opportunity to return to this park on July 15.

“I want to go,” Escobar said. “Maybe. I have a chance.”

On Monday night, Escobar matched a career high with four RBIs. He inflated his on-base plus slugging percentage to a career-high .747. After spending last season as the worst everyday hitter in baseball, Escobar looks reborn in the eyes of those around him.

“This is the best year of his career,” manager Ned Yost said. “Because he’s much more focused. He’s much more in tune with the game. He’s just having a great year.”