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Pujols leads the way with All-Star votes

Pujols hit a home run in the Cardinals' win Sunday over the Royals (UPI photo/Bill Greenblatt)


St. Louis, MO – Cardinals' first baseman Albert Pujols will start for the National League in next week's All-Star game, after garnering more fan votes than any player in the major leagues.

Pujols gained 3,418,555 votes, well ahead of Boston's Manny Ramirez, who had the second-most votes at 3.1 million. Pujols also easily beat out all other National League first basemen by nearly two million votes to gain the starting job.

No other Cardinal will start the game, but third baseman Scott Rolen and pitcher Chris Carpenter will be reserves.

The Chicago White Sox and New York Mets led the way in All-Stars, with each team getting six players.

The White Sox won't have any starters, unless pitcher Jose Contreras is given the nod for the July 11 game in Pittsburgh. But they'll have plenty of players on the bench. Slugger Jim Thome, first baseman Paul Konerko, outfielder Jermaine Dye, lefty Mark Buehrle and closer Bobby Jenks all made it, along with Contreras.

Chicago also could have a seventh player added in Internet balloting: catcher A.J. Pierzynski.

The Mets had four starters elected by fans, including third baseman David Wright and shortstop Jose Reyes each 23 and chosen for the first time. They will be joined in the lineup by catcher Paul Lo Duca and outfielder Carlos Beltran. Starting pitchers Tom Glavine and Pedro Martinez also made it.

Another Mets pitcher could be added, too closer Billy Wagner is one of five candidates for the final NL spot in Internet balloting.

For the fourth straight season, the winner of the All-Star game will get home-field advantage in the World Series.


Catcher Paul Lo Duca, N.Y. Mets
First base Albert Pujols, St. Louis
Second base Chase Utley, Philadelphia
Third base David Wright, N.Y. Mets
Shortstop Jose Reyes, N.Y. Mets
Outfield Jason Bay, Pittsburgh
Outfield Carlos Beltran, N.Y. Mets
Outfield Alfonso Soriano, Washington


Catcher Ivan Rodriguez, Detroit
First base David Ortiz, Boston
Second base Mark Loretta, Boston
Third base Alex Rodriguez, N.Y. Yankees
Shortstop Derek Jeter, N.Y. Yankees
Outfield Vladimir Guerrero, L.A. Angels
Outfield Manny Ramirez, Boston
Outfield Ichiro Suzuki, Seattle


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