Molina in tight race for ASG starting catcher

Cards backstop falls behind Posey; Carpenter, Peralta hold on to leads

Molina in tight race for ASG starting catcher

ST. LOUIS -- Third baseman Matt Carpenter and shortstop Jhonny Peralta maintained their positional leads in the National League All-Star voting, while catcher Yadier Molina fell behind Buster Posey according to the latest 2015 Esurance MLB All-Star Game Ballot vote totals released by the league on Tuesday.

Molina and Posey have flip-flopped places for the last three weeks, though Posey has now opened up a lead of more than 400,000 votes over the Cardinals' veteran backstop. Molina is a six-time All-Star and has been the winner in the fan vote each of the last two seasons.

Peralta and Carpenter are among the four NL players to have received more than four million votes. Carpenter's vote total of 4,455,782 is more than two times greater than his nearest challenger, Chicago's Kris Bryant. Washington's Bryce Harper is the only NL player to have garnered more votes than Carpenter.

Carpenter's game-ending catch

Peralta, who has never been elected an All-Star starter, leads San Francisco's Brandon Crawford by more than one million votes. He entered the day pacing all NL shortstops with 74 hits.

If both Peralta and Carpenter are elected starters, it will make the first time since 2007 that teammates will start on the left side of the infield for the NL team. New York's David Wright and Jose Reyes did so that season.

Peralta's solo homer

Matt Holliday sits behind Harper and in second place among NL outfielders, though he likely won't be able to appear in the game due to a quad injury suffered earlier this month. A six-time All-Star, Holliday has never been a fan-elected starter. San Francisco's Nori Aoki currently holds the third position in the outfield vote.

Kolten Wong trails Miami's Dee Gordon by about 350,000 votes for the nod to start at second base for the NL club. Matt Adams, out until at least September with a quad injury, ranks third in the vote at first base.

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 10:59 p.m. CT. 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.