The 2009 MLB All-Star Game, which will be held in St. Louis this season on July 14th, has less than ten days left in which fans can vote. Voting closes at midnight on July 2nd, and some positions are still too close to call.
One of the tightest races is in the American League, at first base. Naturally, it’s between a Red Sox player and a Yankees player. Boston’s Kevin Kevin Youkilis and New York’s Mark Teixeira have been jockeying back and forth since the first ballot results were released a few weeks ago. At the last results, Teixeira was leading by 35,632 votes.
Another very close race in the American League is taking place between Ian Kinsler of the Texas Rangers and reigning MVP Dustin Pedroia of the Red Sox. In the ballot released Monday, Kinsler was ahead by 58,390 votes. Ian Kinsler was the AL starter in last season’s game.
Here are the rest of the American League positions and how they look as of Tuesday’s ballot:
Third Base: Tampa Rays’ Evan Longoria leads New York Yankees’ Alex Rodriguez by more than 1.3 million votes. It will be Longoria’s second All-Star game in as many years in the majors.
Shortstop: New York Yankees’ SS Derek Jeter, the American League’s leading vote-getter to date, leads Tampa’s Jason Bartlett by over 1.4 million votes. This would be Jeter’s 10th All-Star Game.
Outfield: Boston’s Jason Bay leads all AL outfielders with 2,077,504 votes. Next in line is Mariners’ Ichiro Suzuki with 1,455,266 votes, and then Rangers’ Josh Hamilton with 1,385,212. After Hamilton is a pretty close race between Angels’ Torii Hunter and the Rays’ Carl Crawford who are only separated by 13,856 votes.
Catcher: Minnesota’s Joe Mauer, last year’s AL starter, is well ahead of Boston’s captain, Jason Varitek by some 1,190,490 votes.
Here is the current breakdown:
In the National League, there are no close races, beyond who will be the overall lead vote-getter. As of the time of the Tuesday’s vote, St. Louis’s own super-star first baseman Albert Pujols led Philadelphia Phillies’ second baseman Chase Utley by just under 12,000 votes as they both came in just shy of 3 million votes.
In what’s the closest race for an actual position, Florida Marlins’ SS Hanley Ramirez leads Phillies’ SS Jimmy Rollins by 154, 016 votes. If Ramirez ends up as the starter, according to MLB.com, he’ll be the first Marlins player in their history to start back to back All-Star Games.
The next closest margin is the race for the top outfield spot. Phillies’s Raul Ibanez currently leads Brewers Ryan Braun 2,465,539 – 2,178,144, or 287, 395 votes.
Here are the rest of the National League positions and how they look as of Tuesday’s ballot:
First Base: Albert Pujols leads all vote-getters with 2,934,794 votes. He leads the Phillies’ Ryan Howard by 1,541,248 votes. Pujols leads the majors in HR (26), RBI (70), runs (57), slugging (.713), and OPS (1.159), and is 10th in batting average (.238).
Second Base: At second, Philadelphia’s Chase Utley is far ahead of LA Dodger’s 2B Orlando Hudson by more than 1.8 million votes.
Third Base: Mets’ David Wright leads Nationals’ Ryan Zimmerman by just over 550K votes. Still could go either way. And then just to make it more interesting, Atlanta’s future Hall of Famer Chipper Jones is in 3rd, only 44K behind Zimmerman and less than 600K out of first.
Catcher: Cardinals’ Yadier Molina leads Atlanta’s Brian McCann by 315,937 votes. This one could also go either way. This would be Molina’s first All-Star Game. McCann has been to three (’06-’08).
Outfield: Aside from the aforementioned Ibanez and Braun, Mets’ outfielder Carlos Beltran is currently in third place with 1,779,344 votes. Right behind him is Cubs outfielder Alfonso Soriano with 1,639,664 votes.
Dodger’s suspended outfielder Manny Ramirez, who’s 3rd place ranking a couple of weeks ago caused quite a stir, has dropped down to 6th place.
Here is the current breakdown: