Election Day: Last chance to vote for All-Star starters
Several close races yet to be determined with voting to end at 11:59 ET tonight
Many of the closest races have tightened in the high-volume final hours of voting as the 2014 All-Star Game MLB.com Ballot Sponsored by Experian heads toward its close at 11:59 ET tonight.
With mere hours remaining in the voting, fans continue to furiously cast online ballots that may determine several tight races among the players vying for the 17 starting positions in the 85th All-Star Game on July 15 at Target Field.
Balloting history has shown a typical final-day push from fans voting online at MLB.com and the 30 club sites. That push has averaged nearly four million online votes per closing day in recent years, and it could impact the starting lineups for this year's Midsummer Classic. Here are some of the trends in the American League and National League races in the final day:
AL catcher: Derek Norris over Matt Wieters (40 percent more online votes on Wednesday)
AL outfield: Adam Jones over Melky Cabrera (20 percent more votes Wednesday); Jones over Yoenis Cespedes (18 percent more Wednesday)
NL catcher: Jonathan Lucroy over Yadier Molina (24 percent more votes Wednesday)
NL third base: Aramis Ramirez over David Wright (72 percent more votes Wednesday)
NL outfield: Giancarlo Stanton over Carlos Gomez (14 percent more votes Wednesday); Yasiel Puig over Stanton (6 percent more votes Wednesday); Puig over Gomez (20 percent more votes Wednesday)
Follow @MLB to get any breaking news updates for voting trends in the final hours of balloting.
Final results will be unveiled at 7 pm. ET on Sunday, when the AL and NL rosters will be announced live on the Taco Bell All-Star Game Selection Show on ESPN, preceding the "Sunday Night Baseball" game. MLB.com will feature complete coverage with video and analysis of both rosters.
The AL team will have nine elected starters via the ongoing fan balloting program, while the NL squad will have eight fan-elected starters. Many positions were still too close to call heading into the final week of voting.
Pitchers and reserves for both squads -- totaling 25 for the NL and 24 for the AL -- will be determined through a combination of Player Ballot choices and selections made by All-Star managers Mike Matheny of the Cardinals and John Farrell of the Red Sox.
"It doesn't matter how often or how long it has been happening," Blue Jays outfielder Jose Bautista, Major League Baseball's top overall vote-getter heading into the final week, said of the annual selection process. "I know it takes a lot of time and effort to vote online and at the stadiums and fill out ballots. So when people pay attention and they're following you, and they're showing that they are by voting for you, it's an unbelievable feeling."
Immediately after the rosters are announced, you can resume voting again as five candidates in each league are presented for 34th-man consideration with the 2014 All-Star Game MLB.com Final Vote Sponsored by Experian. Now in its 13th season with more than 430 million votes cast, the Final Vote features unlimited voting on MLB.com, club sites and your mobile phone. Steve Delabar of Toronto and Freddie Freeman of Atlanta were last year's winners.
The final phase of All-Star Game voting will again have fans participating in the voting for the Ted Williams All-Star Game Most Valuable Player Award presented by Chevrolet. During the Midsummer Classic, you can vote exclusively online at MLB.com via the 2014 All-Star Game MLB.com MVP Vote Sponsored by Pepsi, and the fan voice will represent 20 percent of the overall vote that determines the recipient of the Arch Ward Trophy.
All-Star selections are important not only to the individuals chosen, but also to the chances of a subsequent World Series home-field advantage. For the past five years, the league that has won the All-Star Game has capitalized on that edge in winning the Fall Classic.
MLB.com will provide extensive online coverage of the All-Star Week festivities.
The 85th All-Star Game will be televised nationally by FOX, in Canada by Rogers Sportsnet and RDS, and worldwide by partners in more than 200 countries via MLB International's independent feed. ESPN Radio and ESPN Radio Deportes will provide national radio coverage of the All-Star Game. MLB Network and SiriusXM will also provide comprehensive All-Star Week coverage. For more information, please visit allstargame.com.