Yadi in super tight race to start All-Star Game

Cardinals catcher inches ahead of Posey in voting

Yadi in super tight race to start All-Star Game

ST. LOUIS -- Cardinals catcher Yadier Molina has inched ahead of San Francisco's Buster Posey in what is the tightest race in the ongoing voting for the National League's starting All-Stars. Molina is one of three Cardinals position players leading at their respective positions on the 2015 Esurance MLB All-Star Game Ballot.

Jhonny Peralta increased his lead at shortstop and now sits ahead of San Francisco's Brandon Crawford by about 620,000 votes. Third baseman Matt Carpenter, with 3.14 million votes, has more than two times as many votes as his closest challenger, Chicago's Kris Bryant. Carpenter and Nationals outfielder Bryce Harper are the only NL players to have eclipsed three million votes already.

Peralta, a three-time All-Star, has never been elected as a starter before. If he maintains his lead, he would join Ozzie Smith, Edgar Renteria, David Eckstein and Rafael Furcal as Cardinals shortstops to win the fan vote. Peralta leads NL shortstops with 68 hits and tops the Cardinals with nine home runs this year.

If he and Carpenter are elected as starters, they would become the first teammates to start on the left side of the NL infield since New York's David Wright and Jose Reyes did so in 2007. Carpenter, a two-time All-Star, would become just the third Cardinals third baseman to start an All-Star Game, joining Joe Torre and Scott Rolen. Carpenter ranks second in the NL in multi-hit games (23) and doubles (18).

Molina and Posey have traded places atop the list of catchers for the last two weeks. As of Tuesday's update, Molina held a 5,000 vote lead over Posey. Molina is seeking to become the first NL catcher since Mike Piazza to be elected as a starter in three straight years.

Left fielder Matt Holliday, a six-time All-Star, sits in second among all NL outfielders, which would put him in position for his first fan-elected All-Star Game start. Holliday, who opened the season by reaching base in 45 straight games but suffered a quad injury Monday, is seeking to assure the Cardinals of having a starting outfielder on the NL team for the fourth time in five years.

Kolten Wong remains a contender in the second-base race and has closed the gap with leader Dee Gordon of the Marlins. Wong sits about 113,000 votes behind Gordon.

Matt Adams, who is out until at least September while recovering from a quad injury, ranks third among NL first baseman. Jason Heyward (eighth) and Jon Jay (10th) each cracked the Top 10 list of NL outfielders.

Fans can cast their votes for starters at MLB.com and all 30 club sites -- on their computers, tablets and smartphones -- using the 2015 Esurance MLB All-Star Game Ballot until Thursday, July 2, at 11:59 p.m. ET. For the first time, voting is exclusively online, where fans may submit up to 35 ballots.

Fans may also receive the ballot by texting VOTE to 89269 (USA) or 101010 (Canada). Or text VOTA for a ballot in Spanish. Message and data rates may apply. Up to five messages. No purchase required. Reply STOP to cancel. Reply HELP for info.

Following the announcement of the 2015 All-Stars, be sure to return to MLB.com and cast your 2015 Esurance MLB All-Star Game Final Vote for the final player for each league's All-Star roster. On Tuesday, July 14, watch the 2015 All-Star Game live on FOX, and during the game visit MLB.com to submit your choice for the Ted Williams Most Valuable Player Award presented by Chevrolet via the 2015 MLB All-Star Game MVP Vote.

MLB.com will provide extensive online coverage of All-Star Week festivities.

The 86th All-Star Game will be televised nationally by FOX, in Canada by Rogers Sportsnet and RDS, and worldwide by partners in more than 200 countries via MLB International's independent feed. ESPN Radio and ESPN Radio Deportes will provide national radio coverage of the All-Star Game. MLB Network and SiriusXM will also provide comprehensive All-Star Week coverage. For more information, please visit allstargame.com.

Jenifer Langosch is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, By Gosh, It's Langosch, follow her on Twitter @LangoschMLB, like her Facebook page Jenifer Langosch for Cardinals.com and listen to her podcast. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.