We're still dissecting this year's All-Star voting results, wondering how certain players were chosen, how other players weren't and which league will prevail July 12.
Last season, the National League ended a 13-year winless drought, upending the junior circuit, 3-1. It was a victory that, most San Francisco Giants fans will contend, was extremely important, so fans are sure to be in for a treat in a two weeks when the two leagues battle it out in the desert with home field advantage in the World Series on the line.
The starting lineups, announced yesterday, are as follows:
For the American League:
C Alex Avila (Tigers)
1B Adrian Gonzalez (Red Sox)
2B Robinson Cano (Yankees)
SS Derek Jeter (Yankees)
3B Alex Rodriguez (Yankees)
Outfield: Jose Bautista (Blue Jays), Curtis Granderson (Yankees), Josh Hamilton (Rangers)
DH: David Ortiz (Red Sox)
The pitching staff consists of starters Josh Beckett (Red Sox), Gio Gonzalez (Athletics), Felix Hernandez (Mariners), David Price (Rays), James Shields (Rays), Justin Verlander (Tigers), Jered Weaver (Angels) and C.J. Wilson (Rangers); and relievers Aaron Crow (Royals), Brandon League (Mariners), Chris Perez (Indians), Mariano Rivera (Yankees) and Jose Valverde (Tigers).
The list of reserves includes catchers Russell Martin (Yankees) and Matt Wieters (Orioles); infielders Adrian Beltre (Rangers), Asdrubal Cabrera (Indians), Miguel Cabrera (Tigers) and Howard Kendrick (Angels); outfielders Michael Cuddyer (Twins), Jacoby Ellsbury (Red Sox), Matt Joyce (Rays) and Carlos Quentin (White Sox); and DH Michael Young (Rangers)
For the National League:
C Brian McCann (Braves)
1B Prince Fielder (Brewers)
2B Rickie Weeks (Brewers)
SS Jose Reyes (Mets)
3B Placido Polanco (Phillies)
Outfield: Ryan Braun (Brewers), Matt Kemp (Dodgers), Lance Berkman (Cardinals)
The pitching staff consists of starters Matt Cain (Giants), Roy Halladay (Phillies), Cole Hamels (Phillies), Jair Jurrjens (Braves), Clayton Kershaw (Dodgers), Cliff Lee (Phillies), Tim Lincecum (Giants) and Ryan Vogelsong (Giants); and relievers Heath Bell (Padres), Tyler Clippard (Nationals), Joel Hanrahan (Pirates), Jonny Venters (Braves) and Brian Wilson (Giants).
The list of reserves includes catcher Yadier Molina (Cardinals); infielders Starlin Castro (Cubs), Chipper Jones (Braves), Brandon Phillips (Reds), Gaby Sanchez (Marlins), Troy Tulowitzki (Rockies) and Joey Votto (Reds); and outfielders Carlos Beltran (Mets), Jay Bruce (Reds), Matt Holliday (Cardinals), Hunter Pence (Astros) and Justin Upton (D-backs).
The big name for Nationals fans, obviously, is Clippard, who will make his first-ever All-Star appearance. It's certainly a deserved one, too. This season Clippard holds a 1.96 ERA over 46 innings of work, accumulating 57 strikeouts while allowing only 10 earned runs.
But with your help, fans, Clippard won't be the only National heading to Phoenix. Emerging slugger Michael Morse is one of five players named to the National League's Final Vote, where fans can select one additional player to the All-Star roster.
Morse, who has hit .299 with 15 home runs and 46 RBIs, joins Andre Ethier of the Dodgers, Todd Helton of the Rockies, Ian Kennedy of the D-backs, and Shane Victorino of the Phillies as the contenders for the Final Vote nomination.
To vote online, simply go here or text N4 to 89269
Voting for the Final Vote ends Thursday at 4 p.m., and there is no limit to the number of times you can vote. So get online, get texting and help Morse earn a trip to the All-Star game.