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07/08/05 10:04 AM ET

Selig to chat with fans today

Commissioner to address baseball fans around the world

DETROIT -- For the fifth consecutive year, Major League Baseball Commissioner Bud Selig is planning to address baseball fans around the world in a live Internet chat session today, just hours before the All-Star Game at Comerica Park.

Selig will spend about a half-hour answering questions at MLB.com's booth at the John Hancock All-Star FanFest, just blocks from the ballpark in Detroit's downtown Cobo Center, beginning at 1:30 p.m. ET. The chat will be carried live on MLB.com via streaming video and audio.

Fans can submit their questions via e-mail at allstarchat@website.mlb.com.

If there's time after the Internet queries, Selig will again field questions from the live audience, which usually numbers in the high hundreds in what has become a popular feature during All-Star festivities.

This year's chat session should have even more spice to it. It follows by a day Major League Baseball's rollout announcement of next spring's World Baseball Classic -- to be held in three countries, including the United States -- from March 3-20. The 16-nation baseball event is slated to be the first internationally to include Major League players from the 25-man rosters of each of the 30 teams.

The annual FanFest hosts more than 40 baseball-themed attractions, including state-of-the-art video batting and pitching cages and interactive clinics.

The chat has evolved since 2001 when Selig took questions via the Internet for the first time from his Milwaukee office. The next year, the media was invited and a press conference followed the session. In 2003, the current format, with fans in attendance, was implemented.

Barry M. Bloom is a national reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.