BOSTON -- David Ortiz's lead grew in this week's All-Star balloting update. The Red Sox's designated hitter weighed in with 3,128,711 votes and -- for the first time this year -- a separation of more than 500,000 votes between him and the runner-up, Michael Young. Young has 2,564,572 tallies.
Eight AL players have reached the three-million mark so far, and Ortiz is the only one who does not play for either the Rangers (four) or Yankees (three).
Big Papi entered Monday leading the Red Sox and was seventh in the AL with 18 home runs, although he was 0-for-11 in his last three games after a 9-for-20 run. He's carrying a .300/.387/.588 line, with 49 RBIs.
Dustin Pedroia is in third place in the second-base race, but he's got a lot of ground to make up. Pedroia has 1,666,282 votes, while the Yankees' Robinson Cano and Texas' Ian Kinsler are at 3.5 and 3.4 million votes, respectively.
Beyond Pedroia, some Red Sox are playing very well on a team that's won seven of its last eight games, but aren't shooting up the voting charts. Shortstop Mike Aviles is second on the Red Sox in RBIs to Ortiz, with 41, but is not in the top five in voting at the position.
Third baseman Will Middlebrooks has burst on to the scene late, but all he's done is hit, with a .326 average, nine home runs and a .365 on-base percentage.
The only outfielder the Red Sox have in the top 15 is Jacoby Ellsbury, who despite being hurt, is still being appreciated by fans. Daniel Nava, one of the Red Sox's outfielders who's stepped up big, is hitting .339 with a .452 on-base percentage.
Fans can cast their votes for starters up to 25 times at MLB.com and all 30 club sites -- online or via a mobile device -- using the 2012 All-Star Game MLB.com Ballot until Thursday at 11:59 p.m. ET.
Fans can also once again participate in the State Farm Home Run Derby Fan Poll. Fans will have the opportunity to select three players in each league who they would most like to see participate in the State Farm Home Run Derby. The 2012 State Farm Home Run Derby -- part of Gatorade All-Star Workout Day -- will be broadcast live on ESPN, ESPN HD, ESPN Deportes and ESPN Radio in the United States beginning at 8 p.m. ET on July 9.
The 2012 AL and National League All-Star teams will be unveiled on July 1 on the 2012 MLB All-Star Game Selection Show, televised nationally on TBS. Baseball fans around the world will then be able to select the final player on each team via the 2012 All-Star Game Final Vote on MLB.com.
And the voting doesn't end there. The final phase of All-Star Game voting will again have fans participating in the official voting for the Ted Williams All-Star Game Most Valuable Player Award presented by Chevrolet.
During the Midsummer Classic, fans will vote exclusively online at MLB.com via the 2012 All-Star Game MLB.com MVP Vote, and their voice will represent 20 percent of the official vote determining the recipient of the Arch Ward Trophy.
The 2012 All-Star Game will be played at Kauffman Stadium in Kansas City on July 10. Come to MLB.com for extensive online coverage of the All-Star Week festivities.
The 83rd All-Star Game will be televised nationally by FOX Sports, 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 Sirius XM also will also provide comprehensive All-Star Week coverage. For more information, please visit allstargame.com or royals.com/asg.