Nelson Cruz has hit eight home runs in his past 13 games, and All-Star voters have taken notice.
The Orioles designated hitter has passed David Ortiz of the Boston Red Sox as the top All-Star Game vote-getter at his position in the American League, according to results released Monday by Major League Baseball.
Cruz, who leads the major leagues with 20 home runs and boasts a 1.055 on-base-plus-slugging percentage, has 888,855 votes, while Ortiz has 766,631. Last week’s tallies had the Red Sox slugger ahead of Cruz, a two-time All-Star, by nearly 18,000 votes.
Cruz left Sunday's game after being hit by a pitch in his left hand. X-rays were negative, and the Orioles said he's day-to-day.
Though he has played in just 26 games this season, Matt Wieters still leads AL catchers in All-Star voting by a wide margin.
The two-time All-Star, who was batting .308 before he was placed on the disabled list with a strained right elbow May 11, has a cushion of more than 236,000 votes on New York Yankees catcher Brian McCann. Wieters has 842,775 votes, while McCann has 605,941.
The Orioles, who had five All-Stars last season, still have seven players in the Top 5 of the voting in the AL after Monday's release.
Chris Davis, who topped all vote-getters last season, is fourth at first base behind the Detroit Tigers’ Miguel Cabrera, the Chicago White Sox’s Jose Abreu and the Los Angeles Angels’ Albert Pujols. Davis has 422,600 votes, while Cabrera leads with 962,138.
Third baseman Manny Machado is also in fourth place at his position (461,023), behind the Oakland Athletics’ Josh Donaldson (956,811), the Tampa Bay Rays’ Evan Longoria (589,621) and the Texas Rangers’ Adrian Beltre (497,876).
J.J. Hardy is third among AL shortstops, more than half a million votes behind category leader Derek Jeter of the Yankees.
In the outfield, Adam Jones has moved from seventh to sixth with 531,882 votes, and Nick Markakis remains in 10th with 434,228.
The Orioles don’t have a player in the Top 5 at second base or the third outfield spot.
Fans can vote online, up to 25 times, at MLB.com until 11:59 p.m. on July 3. The teams will be announced during the weekend of July 5-6.
The All-Star Game will be held at the Minnesota Twins’ Target Field on July 15.
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