There could be a whole lot of Texas Rangers on the field for the American League at the Major League Baseball All-Star Game on July 10 in Kansas City (yes, Kansas City still has a Major League team).
If the voting were to end today, there would be 5 Rangers in the starting lineup. Outfielder Josh Hamilton is leading all players with more than 3.8 million votes so far. (His starting spot already is fairly secure.) From MLB.com:
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.
Voting continues through online through June 28 right here. You can vote up to 25 times per day.
Even if some of these guys, like Elvis Andrus, don’t end up making the team through the vote, there’s a pretty good chance that the American League All-Star manager, the Rangers’ own Ron Washington, will see to it they make the squad.