Jeter closing in on Griffey's all-time balloting record for 85th All-Star Game
Jeter, who has amassed 1,810,451 votes thus far in 2014, now has a career total of 45,315,271, which ranks second all-time behind Griffey, who posted an all-time high of 50,045,065 during his 22-year career. Jeter, who is bidding for his ninth fan-elected start, would become the seventh player in A.L. history to earn at least nine fan elections, joining Hall of Famers Cal Ripken, Jr. (17 with Baltimore), George Brett (11 with Kansas City) and Rod Carew (nine with Minnesota); as well as Griffey (10 with Seattle); teammate Ichiro Suzuki (nine with Seattle); and Ivan Rodriguez (nine with Texas). Last week, Jeter collected his 350th career stolen base and joined Craig Biggio and Hall of Famer Rickey Henderson as the only players in Major League history with at least 3,000 hits, 250 home runs and 350 stolen bases. Jeter, who ranks eighth on the all-time hit list with 3,380 hits, is followed closely at shortstop by Alexei Ramirez (1,568,620) of the Chicago White Sox. Ramirez, who is attempting to become the first White Sox shortstop to make the All-Star Game since Ozzie Guillen in 1991, is tied for the A.L. lead with 26 multi-hit games, is tied for fifth with 84 hits and ranks eighth with a .311 batting average.
Four-time All-Star Jose Bautista of the Toronto Blue Jays continues to pace the Major Leagues with 2,906,878 votes as he looks to become the overall leading vote-getter for the second time in four seasons. In 2011, Bautista collected 7,454,753 votes en route to becoming the first Blue Jay to lead the Majors in All-Star balloting. Bautista, a fan-elected starter in each of the last three seasons, could become the 10th different A.L. outfielder in history to earn four consecutive fan elections, joining Hall of Famers Reggie Jackson (four from 1972-75 and five from 1980-84); Dave Winfield (six from 1983-88); Henderson (four from 1985-88); and Kirby Puckett (four from 1992-95); as well as Griffey (10 from 1990-99); Manny Ramirez (eight from 1999-2006); Vladimir Guerrero (four from 2004-07); Suzuki (four from 2001-04 and five from 2006-10); and Josh Hamilton (five from 2008-12). In addition, Bautista would become the second player in franchise history to earn four fan-elected starts, joining Hall of Fame second baseman Roberto Alomar (1991-94). Bautista, who has reached base safely in 68 of his 71 games played this season, leads the A.L. with a .436 on-base percentage and 53 walks, ranks third with 51 runs scored, sixth with 139 total bases, seventh with a .314 batting average and a .545 slugging percentage, eighth with 47 RBI and is tied for eighth with 15 home runs.
Bautista continues to be joined in the outfield by Mike Trout (2,544,658) of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim and his Blue Jays teammate Melky Cabrera (1,454,528). Trout, who has the league's second-highest number of votes behind Bautista, has hits in 21 of his last 22 games, batting .386 (32-for-83) with 22 RBI in that span. The 2012 A.L. Rookie of the Year has also reached base safely in 33 of his last 34 games, and has driven in 29 runs over his last 28 contests. The two-time All-Star, who last year at 21 years old became the youngest A.L. position player to start the All-Star Game since Ivan Rodriguez in 1993, is attempting to join Carew (1979-84), Fred Lynn (1982-83), Jackson (1982-84) and Guerrero (2004-07) as the only Angels in history to earn consecutive fan-elected starts. Cabrera, who is tied for second in the A.L. with 86 hits, is aiming to become the fourth different Blue Jays outfielder in history to receive a fan election, joining Bautista, Joe Carter (1993-94) and George Bell (1987). The 2012 N.L. All-Star also ranks among A.L. leaders with five outfield assists (T-5th), 43 runs scored (T-8th) and 135 total bases (T-8th). Along with Bautista, the teammates are trying to become the first pair of Blue Jays to start a Midsummer Classic since 1994, when Alomar and Carter were elected to start by the fans. In addition, they would become the first pair of teammates to start in the A.L. outfield since Boston's Johnny Damon and Manny Ramirez in 2005, and it would mark the 17th All-Star Game in history to feature starting teammates in the A.L. outfield. Yoenis Cespedes of the Oakland Athletics jumped up two spots to fourth among A.L. outfielders with 1,111,613 votes as he seeks his first All-Star selection. He is followed by Baltimore Orioles three-time All-Star and 2013 starter Adam Jones (1,053,228) and 2011 A.L. All-Star Jacoby Ellsbury (1,027,390) of the Yankees.
In his first year with the Seattle Mariners, second baseman Robinson Cano may reunite with his former teammate Jeter up the middle at the Midsummer Classic. The five-time All-Star, who has been elected the starting second baseman in each of the last four years, has received 1,513,052 votes as he remains in front of three-time All-Star Ian Kinsler (1,117,345) of the Detroit Tigers and four-time All-Star Dustin Pedroia (1,008,809) of the Boston Red Sox. With a fan election this year, Cano would become the third second baseman in A.L. history to earn five consecutive fan-elected starts, joining Hall of Famers Carew (six straight, 1970-75) and Alomar (five straight, 1996-2000). Cano, who would join Bret Boone (2001) as the only fan-elected starting second basemen in Mariners history, could become just the fourth Seattle infielder to receive an election from the fans, joining Boone, John Olerud (1B, 2001) and Alex Rodriguez (SS, 1997-98; 2000). Cano is tied for the A.L. lead with 26 multi-hit games, ranks second with a .327 batting average and eighth with 83 hits and a .381 on-base percentage.
A pair of Orioles - designated hitter Nelson Cruz and catcher Matt Wieters - continue to hold off competition at their respective positions as they each strive for their first fan-elected starting assignments. Cruz, a two-time All-Star, has totaled 1,792,432 votes to remain ahead of nine-time All-Star and seven-time fan-elected starter David Ortiz (1,316,921) of the Red Sox. Cruz, who leads the Majors with 21 home runs and 56 RBI, is attempting to end Ortiz's run of three consecutive fan-elected starts at designated hitter, and would become just the fifth different fan-elected starter at the position, joining Edgar Martinez (1997, 2001, 2003), Jose Canseco (1999), Ortiz (2005, 2008, 2011-13) and Guerrero (2010). Wieters has collected 1,488,884 votes to rank ahead of backstops Brian McCann (1,075,210) of the Yankees and Derek Norris (1,072,827) of the Athletics. Wieters, who is currently on the disabled list with a right elbow strain, is batting .308 with five home runs and 18 RBI on the season. The two-time All-Star is bidding to join Terry Kennedy (1987) as the only catchers in Orioles history to earn a fan election. Along with Cruz, the duo is aiming to give the Orioles multiple starters in consecutive years (Chris Davis, J.J. Hardy and Adam Jones in 2013) for the first time since 1997 (Alomar, Ripken, Brady Anderson) and 1998 (Alomar, Ripken).
First baseman Miguel Cabrera of the Tigers and third baseman Josh Donaldson of the Athletics continue to hold comfortable leads at the corner infield positions. Cabrera, who ranks second in the A.L. with 55 RBI, has received 2,030,773 votes, which ranks ahead of Chicago White Sox rookie Jose Abreu (1,117,743). Cabrera, an eight-time All-Star, is seeking his second fan election after earning his first career fan-elected start in 2013 as a third baseman. The reigning two-time A.L. Most Valuable Player also leads the league with 23 doubles, ranks third with a .324 batting average, tied for third with 35 extra-base hits, fifth with 141 total bases, sixth with a .557 slugging percentage and is tied for ninth with 82 hits. The 2012 Triple Crown winner would become just the fifth player in Tigers history to earn multiple fan-elected starting assignments at the Midsummer Classic, joining catchers Bill Freehan (1970, 1972), Lance Parrish (1984-86), Rodriguez (2004, 2006-07) and second baseman Lou Whitaker (1984-86). In addition, Cabrera would join former teammate Prince Fielder as the only fan-elected starting first basemen in Tigers history. Donaldson has received 1,953,423 votes as he vies for his first career All-Star selection. Donaldson, who is tied for fourth in the A.L. with 17 home runs, would become the first A's third baseman to earn a fan-elected start, and the first Oakland player overall to receive a fan-election since first baseman Jason Giambi in 2000. Donaldson also ranks second in the league with 52 runs scored, is tied for fifth with 51 RBI, places ninth with 30 extra-base hits and is 10th with 34 walks. He is followed at third base by three-time All-Star Adrian Beltre (953,318) of the Texas Rangers and three-time All-Star Evan Longoria (904,638) of the Tampa Bay Rays.
With four different teams currently represented in the A.L. infield, the 85th All-Star Game could mark the first time since 2003, and the 19th time overall since fan balloting began in 1970, that the four A.L. fan-elected starting infielders come from four different teams.
MLB's All-Star Balloting Program is the largest of its kind in professional sports. The last two years represent the two highest totals in balloting history, including a record 40.2 million ballots cast in 2012. More than 20 million Firestone All-Star ballots will be distributed at MLB's 30 ballparks, each of which will have 23 dates for balloting.
In addition, fans around the world can cast their votes for starters 25 times exclusively at MLB.com and all 30 Club web sites - online or via their mobile devices - with the 2014 All-Star Game MLB.com Ballot Sponsored by Experian. The All-Star Game MLB.com Ballot Sponsored by Experian is available in English and Spanish, and offers audio CAPTCHA functionality for visually-impaired fans. Banco BHD sponsors online 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 Web site of Major League Baseball.
Every Major League Club began its in-stadium balloting no later than May 12th. When the in-stadium phase of balloting concludes no later than June 26th, fans will have the opportunity to cast their ballots exclusively online at MLB.com, the 30 Club Web sites and their mobile devices until Thursday, July 3rd at 11:59 p.m. (EDT).
Firestone, the official tire of MLB, is once again the exclusive sponsor of the 2014 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, and VIP on-field access to watch batting practice before the All-Star Game with an MLB legend.
For the sixth consecutive year, the ballot features the Home Run Derby Fan Poll. Fans have the opportunity to select three players in each League who they would most like to see participate in the Home Run Derby. The Fan Poll is also available online at MLB.com. The 2014 Home Run Derby, part of Gatorade All-Star Workout Day, will be broadcast live on ESPN, ESPN HD, ESPN Deportes and ESPN Radio in the United States beginning at 8:00 p.m. (ET)/7:00 p.m. (CT) on Monday, July 14th. The 10 American League candidates are Jose Bautista of the Toronto Blue Jays; Carlos Beltran of the New York Yankees; Miguel Cabrera of the Detroit Tigers; Robinson Cano of the Seattle Mariners; 2013 Home Run Derby Champion Yoenis Cespedes of the Oakland Athletics; Chris Davis of the Baltimore Orioles; Prince Fielder of the Texas Rangers; All-Star Ambassador Joe Mauer of the Twins; David Ortiz of the Boston Red Sox; and Mike Trout of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim. The 10 National League candidates are Pedro Alvarez of the Pittsburgh Pirates; Jay Bruce of the Cincinnati Reds; Paul Goldschmidt of the Arizona Diamondbacks; Bryce Harper of the Washington Nationals; Jason Heyward of the Atlanta Braves; Buster Posey of the San Francisco Giants; Yasiel Puig of the Los Angeles Dodgers; Giancarlo Stanton of the Miami Marlins; Troy Tulowitzki of the Colorado Rockies; and David Wright of the New York Mets.
The 2014 American League and National League All-Star Teams will be unveiled on the 2014 MLB All-Star Game Selection Show during the weekend of July 5th-6th, with further details to follow. The A.L. All-Star Team will have nine elected starters via the fan balloting program, while the N.L. All-Star Team will have eight fan-elected starters. The pitchers and reserves for both squads - totaling 25 for the N.L. and 24 for the A.L. - will be determined through a combination of "Player Ballot" choices and selections made by the two All-Star managers - N.L. skipper Mike Matheny of the St. Louis Cardinals and A.L. manager John Farrell of the defending World Series Champion Boston Red Sox.
Immediately following the announcement of the American League and National League All-Star rosters, fans will begin voting to select the final player for each League's 34-man roster via the 2014 All-Star Game MLB.com Final Vote Sponsored by Experian. Fans will cast their votes from a list of five players from each League over the balloting period. Now in its 13th season with more than 430 million votes cast, fans again will be able to make their Final Vote selections on MLB.com, Club sites and their mobile phones.
This year's final phase of All-Star Game voting again will have fans participating in the official voting for the Ted Williams All-Star Game Most Valuable Player Award presented by Chevrolet. During the Midsummer Classic, fans will vote exclusively online at MLB.com and the 30 Club sites via the 2014 All-Star Game MLB.com MVP Vote Sponsored by Pepsi, and their collective voice will represent 20 percent of the official vote determining this year's recipient of the Arch Ward Trophy.
The 2014 All-Star Game will be played at Target Field on Tuesday, July 15th. The 85th 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. 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, please visit allstargame.com.