07/08/10 4:00 PM ET
The votes are in: Who will be All-Stars?
Results of Final Vote races will be revealed live at 6 p.m. ET
By Mark Newman / MLB.com
The 2010 All-Star Game Final Vote Sponsored by Sprint is officially closed, after an amazing run of online fan balloting. Your choice will be revealed live at 6 p.m. ET exclusively at MLB.com and on MLB Network.
Who won the Yankees-Red Sox rivalry episode between Nick Swisher and Kevin Youkilis? The Yankees right fielder led by the narrowest of margins over the Red Sox first baseman as the final seven hours began with a virtual dead heat. Did Youkilis make it a perfect 4-for-4 for Red Sox Nation voters in Final Vote history? Will Swisher get to play for his manager, Joe Girardi, on Tuesday in what would be his first Midsummer Classic?
Swisher and Youkilis were followed in the final update by Paul Konerko of the White Sox, Michael Young of the Rangers and Delmon Young of the Twins. Did any of them make a huge finish?
Did Reds first baseman Joey Votto make it a wire-to-wire run right to Anaheim? He led on each Final Vote update entering Thursday morning, and was followed in the last update by Ryan Zimmerman of the Nationals, Carlos Gonzalez of the Rockies and Billy Wagner of the Braves.
Padres reliever Heath Bell was a candidate for about three-fourths of the competition, until he got the good news that he was replacing Yovani Gallardo of the Brewers on the NL roster.
Here is a fast look at your candidates:
Gonzalez: Part of yet another Rockies walk-off victory on Wednesday, this time he went 3-for-5 with a double. Representing his native Venezuela on the ballot, he has put himself on the map among fans who might not have known much about CarGo yet.
Votto: The Reds just won two of three from the Mets at Citi Field, with their first baseman leading the charge with a two-homer performance in the opener. He was hitless over the past two games but was walked three times. Reds teammates were wearing "Vote Votto" red T-shirts during pregame stretching, typical of the mass support he has received.
Wagner: Recorded his 19th save on Wednesday as the Braves took two of three from the Phillies, making Atlanta the first NL team to 50 wins. This is his third time on ballot (also with Phillies and Mets), so he's hoping this time is the charm.
Zimmerman: Knocked in another run (his 47th RBI) in the Adam Dunn Show on Wednesday, a night after his two-homer, walk-off game, as the Nats swept Padres. He is hitting .296 with 16 homers, and has one of best gloves, if not the best, at third base.
Konerko: The "Pauliewood" candidate was 2-for-4 and drove in a pair of runs to lead the White Sox to a 5-2 victory over the Angels after a long rain delay. That pushed Chicago past the Twins and within one game behind the Tigers in the wild AL Central chase. Konerko is batting .298 with 20 homers and 60 RBIs.
Swisher: Campaigned as loud as one could on Wednesday with a single, double and homer -- a triple shy of hitting for the cycle -- in the Yankees' 6-2 victory at Oakland, and lobbying for and then receiving Twitter endorsements from New York mayor Michael Bloomberg, actress Jessica Alba and "The Apprentice" co-star Ivanka Trump.
Youkilis: Although Matt Garza got him with a fastball to strand two and end the game Wednesday night, the fact Youk was in the game spoke volumes. He played with pain for a Red Sox team battered by injury. He is batting .292 with 17 homers, 55 RBIs and 66 runs. Red Sox Nation is 3-for-3 in the Final Vote; will it make it four?
M. Young: Led the Rangers to their 50th victory by launching a two-run homer off Indians starter Mitch Talbot, his 12th on the season. It's been a typical Michael Young season so far, with a .306 average, 53 RBIs and 56 runs.
D. Young: He hit a solo homer in the fourth inning Wednesday for the Twins off Marc Rzepczyski, giving him 10 on the year to go with 57 RBIs and a .306 average. That made the former No. 1 overall draft pick 6-for-11 during the Final Vote process.
The All-Star Game Sprint Final Vote program has seen nearly 200 million votes cast since its inception in 2002. Previous winners of the All-Star Game Final Vote Sponsored by Sprint, in addition to Shane Victorino and Inge last year, are: Longoria (AL, 2008); Hart (NL, 2008); Okajima (AL, 2007); Chris Young (NL, 2007); Pierzynski (AL, 2006); Nomar Garciaparra (NL, 2006); Podsednik (AL, 2005); Roy Oswalt (NL, 2005); Matsui (AL, 2004); Bobby Abreu (NL, 2004); Varitek (AL, 2003); Geoff Jenkins (NL, 2003); Damon (AL, 2002); and Andruw Jones (NL, 2002).
The fun doesn't end with the Final Vote, either. The final phase of All-Star Game voting will have fans once again participate in the official voting for the All-Star Game Ted Williams Most Valuable Player Award presented by Chevrolet via the 2010 All-Star Game MLB.com MVP Vote Sponsored by Sprint. Carl Crawford of the Rays won the award in 2009.
The 81st Major League Baseball All-Star Game will be televised nationally by FOX, in Canada by Rogers Sportsnet, Sportsnet HD and Le Reseau de Sport, and around the world by Major League Baseball International, with pregame ceremonies beginning at 8 p.m. ET. ESPN Radio will provide exclusive national radio coverage. MLB Network, MLB.com and Sirius XM also will provide comprehensive All-Star Game coverage.