One spot remains up for grabs on both the American League and National League All-Star rosters, and with the Final Vote set to end Friday at 4 p.m. ET, Wednesday's updated standings could be a harbinger of things to come.
According to the MLB All-Star Game's official Twitter account, Kansas City Royals third baseman Mike Moustakas currently leads in the AL, while Cincinnati Reds starting pitcher Johnny Cueto paces the field of five in the NL:
Bob Dutton of the News Tribune provided a look at the vote totals for the current leaders:
Four Royals were voted into the American League starting lineup in the form of catcher Salvador Perez, shortstop Alcides Escobar and outfielders Lorenzo Cain and Alex Gordon. Because of that, it comes as little surprise that Moose is ahead of Minnesota Twins second baseman Brian Dozier, Detroit Tigers outfielder Yoenis Cespedes, New York Yankees outfielder Brett Gardner and Boston Red Sox shortstop Xander Bogaerts.
While Moustakas is having a strong campaign with a .301 batting average, seven home runs and 31 RBI, it can be argued that someone like Gardner is more deserving of the honor. He is currently fourth in the voting despite hitting .296 with nine homers, 39 RBI and 15 stolen bases while playing Gold Glove-caliber defense.
Per Ari Kramer of Newsday, Yanks manager Joe Girardi feels as though Gardner is an All-Star based on the way he has played this season.
"I'd really encourage our fans to vote for Gardner," Girardi said. "I think he deserves to be on the All-Star team for what he does offensively and defensively. And just the way he plays the game, I think it's what Yankees fans love."
Cueto's place atop the NL standings was somewhat expected as well, since the All-Star Game will take place in Cincinnati. Colorado Rockies shortstop Troy Tulowitzki trails just behind in second, while a trio of pitchers in Carlos Martinez of the St. Louis Cardinals, Clayton Kershaw of the Los Angeles Dodgers and New York Mets closer Jeurys Familia round out the voting.
Although few would argue with Cueto making the All-Star team due to his 2.61 ERA, the fact that Kershaw is only fourth after winning three Cy Young Awards in four years is fairly shocking.
Despite Cueto flashing his All-Star form in Tuesday's performance against the Washington Nationals, it wasn't enough to convince Cliff Corcoran of Sports Illustrated:
The fans' voting can and will be questioned by many moving forward, but the All-Star Game is ultimately an exhibition for the fans, and two excellent players will be added to the mix regardless of how the vote plays out in the coming days.
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