Minnesota Twins catcher Joe Mauer, Boston Red Sox teammates Kevin Youkilis and Dustin Pedroia and Seattle Mariners outfielder Ichiro Suzuki, who is vying for the third starting outfield slot, cling to tight leads in the AL All-Star race. Mauer (1,632,338 votes), who has an edge for the second straight week, leads Boston?s Jason Varitek (1,487,390) by less than 145,000 votes. On the right side of the infield, the pair of Red Sox continues to hang on in their bids to make their Midsummer Classic debuts; Youkilis (1,915,376) is in front of Minnesota?s Justin Morneau (1,641,467) at first base and Pedroia (1,669,216) is outpacing Ian Kinsler (1,485,530) of the Texas Rangers at second. Suzuki, an A.L. All-Star in each of his seven Major League seasons and a fan-elected starter six times, leads a crowded pack in contention for the final starting outfield position with 1,397,460 votes. Angels outfielder Vladimir Guerrero is fourth with 1,187,273 votes. The two leading American League vote-getters comprise the left side of the infield of the host New York Yankees. Third baseman Alex Rodriguez, who was Major League Baseball?s most popular choice in last year?s All-Star balloting, has vaulted to the top of this year?s A.L. totals for the first time with 2,518,067 votes. Right behind him is his teammate, shortstop Derek Jeter, with 2,507,534 votes. Rounding out the top five most popular American Leaguers are designated hitter David Ortiz (2,482,981) and outfielder Manny Ramirez (2,409,388) of the Red Sox along with Major League Baseball?s RBI leader, outfielder Josh Hamilton (2,327,467) of the Rangers.
AL Voting Gets Closer As All-Star Game Approaches