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Rangers dominate, Konerko moves up in voting

Rangers dominate, Konerko moves up in voting

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Rangers dominate, Konerko moves up in voting
The Rangers' potential takeover of the 2012 All-Star Game isn't slowing.

In American League balloting update No. 2, released on Monday, Texas again has five players in line to start in the 83rd All-Star Game on July 10 in Kansas City. Outfielder Josh Hamilton, who paced all Major Leaguers last week, remains the AL's top vote-getter with 3,833,504. The National League update is to be released Tuesday.

There were no lead changes in the AL, but Paul Konerko's incredible season for the White Sox has moved him into the No. 2 spot in the race at first base, which Detroit's Prince Fielder leads with 1,421,786 votes. Konerko has 1,147,089, and the Yankees' Mark Teixeira, down a spot into third place, has 991,075.

Fans can submit up to 25 ballots per email address with the All-Star Game Online Ballot, through June 28 exclusively at MLB.com and all 30 club sites, wired or mobile. Once that voting ends, then comes the always-frenetic finish with the All-Star Game MLB.com Final Vote from July 1-5 and the annual MVP vote during the All-Star Game to help decide who wins the Ted Williams Most Valuable Player Award.

Hamilton's teammate Nelson Cruz holds the third starting spot in the outfield, and he has a race on his hands: he's edging out No. 4 Jose Bautista of the Blue Jays by fewer than 42,000 votes, and he's fewer than 35,000 votes behind the No. 2 outfielder, Curtis Granderson of the Yankees. The Orioles' Adam Jones is in fifth place and in the mix as well, trailing Bautista by fewer than 40,000 votes.

Adrian Beltre has a cushion of more than 300,000 votes over the Tigers' Miguel Cabrera at third base, an increase in his lead from the first update. That makes three if-they-played-the-game-today starters for the Rangers.

The other two: Second baseman Ian Kinsler, who has a lead of more than 282,000 on the Yankees' Robinson Cano, and catcher Mike Napoli. Napoli has a wide lead over the next two catchers, who are much closer together. Napoli has more than 1.6 million votes, while the Twins' Joe Mauer and Orioles' Matt Wieters each have a little more than 900,000.

Texas has two second-place vote-getters, as well. Boston' designated hitter David Ortiz is on his way to an eighth career All-Star selection with 1,758,369 votes, and the Rangers' Michael Young seems to be his only serious competition, with 1,396,802 votes. Young, too, would have eight Midsummer Classic selections.

Elvis Andrus is the other Rangers player who's one spot away, but he's got nearly one million votes to make up. That's because, for all of Texas' dominance, the AL's Nos. 2 and 3 top overall vote-getters are Yankees. Derek Jeter has 2,419,508 votes (Andrus has 1,448,544) and Granderson has 2,033,239.

The Yankees are the only AL team with more than one player who has reached two million votes.

There are a pair of third-place vote-getters at positions aside from the outfield who have reached one million votes. At second base is Dustin Pedroia of the Red Sox, and at third is Evan Longoria of the Rays.

The MLB All-Star balloting program last year produced a record-shattering total of 32.5 million ballots cast. More than 20 million Firestone All-Star ballots will be distributed at the 30 Major League ballparks, each of which will have 23 dates for balloting, and in approximately 100 Minor League ballparks.

When the in-stadium phase of balloting concludes on June 22, fans will have the opportunity to cast their ballots exclusively online at MLB.com until 11:59 p.m. ET on June 28.

Firestone, the official tire of MLB, is once again the exclusive sponsor of the 2012 In-Stadium All-Star Balloting Program. The ballot features an All-Star sweepstakes, in which a winner will be rewarded with a trip for two to MLB All-Star Week, including airfare, hotel accommodations, tickets to the All-Star Game and other MLB All-Star Week events.

Scotts, the official lawn-care company of MLB, is once again the sponsor of the retail All-Star Balloting Program, which launched on May 4 in select Lowe's stores and Chevrolet dealerships across the country. The Scotts ballot includes an opportunity to enter for a chance to win a baseball field makeover using Scotts products for your community.

Banco BHD sponsors All-Star balloting in the Dominican Republic, making Spanish-language ballots available to fans in the Dominican Republic via LasMayores.com, the official Spanish-language website of Major League Baseball, and at All-Star balloting terminals across more than 80 branches. Coors Light provides offline All-Star balloting in 60 Wal-Mart and Amigo convenience stores throughout Puerto Rico, through Sunday.

The 2012 rosters will be unveiled July 1 on the 2012 MLB All-Star Game Selection Show presented by Taco Bell, televised nationally on TBS. The AL All-Star team will have nine elected starters via the fan balloting program, while the NL squad will have eight fan-elected starters. The pitchers and reserves for both squads -- totaling 25 for the NL and 24 for the AL -- will be determined through a combination of Player Ballot choices and selections made by the two All-Star managers -- AL skipper Ron Washington of the Rangers and NL manager Tony La Russa -- in conjunction with MLB.

The 83rd All-Star Game will be televised nationally by FOX Sports; in Canada by Rogers Sportsnet and RDS; and worldwide by partners in more than 200 countries via MLB International's independent feed. Pregame ceremonies will begin at 8 p.m. ET. ESPN Radio and ESPN Radio Deportes will provide exclusive national radio coverage of the All-Star Game. MLB Network, MLB.com and Sirius XM also will provide comprehensive All-Star Week coverage. For more information, visit allstargame.com or royals.com/asg.

AMERICAN LEAGUE

FIRST BASE
Prince Fielder, Tigers: 1,421,786
Paul Konerko, White Sox: 1,147,089
Mark Teixeira, Yankees: 991,075
Mitch Moreland, Rangers: 852,091
Albert Pujols, Angels: 707,779

SECOND BASE
Ian Kinsler, Rangers: 1,920,364
Robinson Cano, Yankees: 1,732,359
Dustin Pedroia, Red Sox: 1,037,522
Robert Andino, Orioles: 402,083
Jason Kipnis, Indians: 357,651

THIRD BASE
Adrian Beltre, Rangers: 1,634,057
Miguel Cabrera, Tigers: 1,313,063
Evan Longoria, Rays: 1,061,901
Alex Rodriguez, Yankees: 927,163
Mike Moustakas, Royals: 548,936

SHORTSTOP
Derek Jeter, Yankees: 2,419,508
Elvis Andrus, Rangers: 1,448,544
J.J. Hardy, Orioles: 663,042
Asdrubal Cabrera, Indians: 514,741
Alcides Escobar, Royals: 493,947

CATCHER
Mike Napoli, Rangers: 1,640,160
Joe Mauer, Twins: 912,997
Matt Wieters, Orioles: 904,425
A.J. Pierzynski, White Sox: 733,282
Russell Martin, Yankees: 602,983

DESIGNATED HITTER
David Ortiz, Red Sox: 1,758,369
Michael Young, Rangers: 1,396,802
Raul Ibanez, Yankees: 752,884
Adam Dunn, White Sox: 645,213
Billy Butler, Royals: 617,368

OUTFIELDERS
Josh Hamilton, Rangers: 3,833,504
Curtis Granderson, Yankees: 2,033,239
Nelson Cruz, Rangers: 1,398,534
Jose Bautista, Blue Jays: 1,357,784
Adam Jones, Orioles: 1,318,091
David Murphy, Rangers: 884,522
Nick Swisher, Yankees: 862,648
Jeff Francoeur, Royals: 654,999
Brett Gardner, Yankees: 612,306
Ichiro Suzuki, Mariners: 605,663
Austin Jackson, Tigers: 545,032
Alex Gordon, Royals: 520,156
B.J. Upton, Rays: 504,914
Jacoby Ellsbury, Red Sox: 503,912
Nick Markakis, Orioles: 502,615

Evan Drellich is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @EvanDrellich. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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