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Jose Altuve's disappointing season can get a boost with a vote into the All Star Game.
Jose Altuve's disappointing season can get a boost with a vote into the All Star Game.
Photo by Jack Gorman

Astros Lead the American League With Seven on Final All Star Ballot

Over the last week or so, the good news for the Astros has been somewhat sparse. Sure, you have George Springer and Collin McHugh coming back from injuries very soon, but Carlos Correa and Aledmys Diaz will be gone until after the All Star break, and there's this little matter in which they've been losing a bunch of baseball games, as well.

However, if you're into the MLB All Star Game, or more to the point, if you're into the American League All Star roster being littered with players from your hometown team, then it was a decent weekend. The first round of All Star voting ended on Friday, in which each position was narrowed down to the top three vote getters (except for the outfield, which is the top nine) on the ballot.

To nobody's surprise, the ultra-talented Astros led the American League with seven names making it to the Starters Election, which takes place later this week. (Details on that, coming in a minute.) The only positions where the Astros didn't get a player into the final round of voting were first base (sorry, Yuli) and designated hitter (maybe next year with a full season of Yordan Alvarez).

Here are the results:

FIRST BASE
Luke Voit, Yankees
Carlos Santana, Indians
C.J. Cron, Twins

SECOND BASE
DJ LeMahieu, Yankees
Jose Altuve, Astros
Tommy La Stella, Angels

THIRD BASE
Alex Bregman, Astros

Gio Urshela, Yankees
Hunter Dozier, Royals

SHORTSTOP
Carlos Correa, Astros

Jorge Polanco, Twins
Gleyber Torres, Yankees

CATCHER
Gary Sanchez, Yankees
James McCann, White Sox
Robinson Chirinos, Astros

OUTFIELD
Mike Trout, Angels
George Springer, Astros
Michael Brantley, Astros

Austin Meadows, Rays
Mookie Betts, Red Sox
Eddie Rosario, Twins
Aaron Judge, Yankees
Josh Reddick, Astros
Joey Gallo, Rangers

DESIGNATED HITTER
J.D. Martinez, Red Sox
Hunter Pence, Rangers
Nelson Cruz, Twins

Before giving my prediction on the voting, here is a quick refresher to the more complex selection process that MLB is instituting this season:

The final round of voting begins on Wednesday at noon ET. Voting will run for 28 hours, ending at 4 p.m. ET on Thursday, June 27. Just like the primary leg of the voting, there are two ways to vote:

1. On MLB platforms, including MLB.com, all 30 club sites and the MLB At Bat and MLB Ballpark mobile apps.

2. On Google Search (in the U.S. and Canada only), fans can vote for any player on the ballot by entering a player's name (for example, "Mike Trout"), and that will allow you to vote for that player directly from the search results. Alternately, fans can go directly to the Google ballot or enter searches such as "MLB All-Star Ballot" or "MLB vote" or "MLB All-Star vote" in the search bar. These searches will trigger a full All-Star ballot within the search results.

Fans can only vote once on MLB platforms and submit up to 17 unique player votes on Google. The combined vote totals from these various platforms will determine the ballot winners. All votes from the primary round will be reset for the final round, and each finalist will start with a clean slate. Fans will only be allowed to vote once during the final round for the player they want to see in the starting lineup for the Midsummer Classic.
The winners will be announced Thursday at 7 p.m. ET. All-Star reserves and pitchers will be revealed at 5:30 p.m. ET on Sunday, June 30.


So, be sure to block out Wednesday afternoon and evening to sit at your computer and find a way to jam the ballot box for all the Houston guys. Also, can someone get these instructions to Yao Ming, and maybe have him retweet them? I feel like the entire country of China will do whatever Yao asks of them, when it comes to making Houston athletes super popular.

Bregman and Springer are locks to get voted in, as both were comfortably in line to start if the voting were closed without this Wednesday's runoff.  I still have confidence Altuve will reestablish himself in this runoff as the starter, despite not really deserving to start. Correa appears to have passed Polanco in this past week, which makes no sense since he's been out with a broken rib. Michael Brantley finished third among outfielders, which bodes well for him.

ALL STAR PREDICTION: Bregman, Springer, Altuve, Correa all start. Brantley makes it as a reserve. Justin Verlander will make the pitching staff. Chirinos, Gerrit Cole, Ryan Pressly, and Roberto Osuna all have a puncher's chance, too. I'll go with SEVEN total Astro All Stars.

Listen to Sean Pendergast on SportsRadio 610 from 2 to 6 p.m. weekdays. Also, follow him on Twitter at twitter.com/SeanTPendergast and like him on Facebook at facebook.com/SeanTPendergast.

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