06/14/2004 2:42 PM ET
Bonds, Kent million-vote men
Everett takes NL lead at short, Griffey moves up
By Jim Molony / MLB.com
|Barry Bonds has a few weeks before he turns 40, but his pair of all-time marks fit right on the list. (Jack Dempsey/AP)
San Francisco outfielder Barry Bonds and Houston second baseman Jeff Kent surpassed the one million-vote plateau and Kent's teammate Adam Everett vaulted back into the lead at shortstop in the latest National League voting totals for the 75th All-Star Game released Monday by Major League Baseball.
Bonds, who leads all NL players with 1,196,386 votes, has almost doubled his total from this point last season, when no National Leaguer topped one million votes until the final week of balloting.
Kent (1,089,924) polled 462,762 votes in the last seven days alone, or more than his nearest competitor (Atlanta's Marcus Giles with 382,287) has totaled thus far. Giles beat out Kent for the NL starting berth in last year's game at U.S. Cellular Field in Chicago by fewer than 40,000 votes.
Two other NL leaders, third baseman Scott Rolen of St. Louis and catcher Mike Piazza of New York, should collect their one millionth vote of the current campaign within days.
Rolen widened his lead over Aramis Ramirez of the Cubs to more than a half-million votes while Piazza pulled away from Houston catcher Brad Ausmus and now leads by a margin of roughly 363,000.
Fans can cast their votes up to 25 times in the Ameriquest All-Star Online Ballot, which is available exclusively at MLB.com and all 30 club sites, and ballots also are being punched at each Major League ballpark. Online balloting ends at 11:59 p.m. ET on June 30.
Cincinnati's Ken Griffey Jr., the all-time All-Star Game votes leader, rode his resurgence and pursuit of his 500th career homer past Chicago's Sammy Sosa for second place in the outfield balloting. The Reds center fielder polled nearly 475,000 votes during the last week to move ahead of Sosa and within 220,000 of Bonds.
|NATIONAL LEAGUE LEADERS|
|Pujols, A.||first base||892,603|
|Kent, J.||second base||1,089,924|
|Rolen, S.||third base||998,851|
| Complete NL update >|
Houston's Lance Berkman trails third-place Sosa by fewer than 160,000 votes. Completing the top 10 outfield leaders, in order, are Houston's Craig Biggio, Chicago's Moises Alou, Houston's Richard Hidalgo, Jim Edmonds of the Cardinals, Miguel Cabrera of Florida and Cincinnati's Adam Dunn.
The tighest battle has been at shortstop. For the third consecutive week, Everett and Edgar Renteria of St. Louis traded places at the top. Everett, who trailed Renteria by approximately 2,000 votes last week, rode a wave of more than a quarter-million votes to take over the shortstop lead by almost 80,000 over the Cardinals' two-time Gold Glove winner. Kaz Matsui of the Mets, Barry Larkin of the Reds and Rafael Furcal of the Braves are fewer than 250,000 votes from the lead.
At first base, Albert Pujols of the Cardinals holds the edge over Jeff Bagwell of the Astros, while Sean Casey of the Reds enjoyed a huge week at the polls to move up from fifth place to third. Jim Thome of Philadelphia and Derrek Lee of the Cubs are fourth and fifth, respectively.
The Astros lead with eight players listed among 40 ranked players (top 15 outfielders and top five at the other positions) for the July 13 Midsummer Classic, which will be played at Minute Maid Park in Houston. Morgan Ensberg (third in the third base voting) joins Kent, Everett, Bagwell, Berkman, Biggio, Hidalgo and Ausmus among the leaders.
The Cubs are next with seven ranked players (Sosa, Ramirez, Alou, Lee, second baseman Mark Grudzielanek, catcher Michael Barrett and outfielder Corey Patterson) while Atlanta lists four (Giles, Furcal, catcher Johnny Estrada and outfielders Andruw Jones and Chipper Jones), as do the Cardinals (Rolen, Pujols, Renteria and Edmonds).
St. Louis (Rolen and Pujols) and Houston (Kent and Everett) are the only teams with at least two players leading at their respective positions.
The NL Central is the most heavily represented division among the leaders, with six players leading at their positions and 23 of the 40 ranked players. The NL East is second with one leader and 13 overall.
Other than Bonds, it was all quiet on the western front as only four players from the NL West -- Bonds, catcher Paul Lo Duca and third baseman Adrian Beltre of the Dodgers and second baseman Roberto Alomar of Arizona -- are among the current leaders.
San Diego, tied with Los Angeles for first place in the division, is one of five teams without a representative among the voting leaders. Milwaukee, Pittsburgh, Colorado and Montreal also do not have a player listed among the leaders.
The starters and reserves will be announced July 4.
Fans will once again be able to determine the 32nd men for each league with the Ameriquest All-Star Final Vote.
Jim Molony is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.