ESPN's picks to start the All-Star Game

Updated: July 4, 2008, 3:53 PM ET
ESPN.com

In advance of the All-Star Game selections on Sunday, ESPN.com surveyed 32 of ESPN's top baseball minds to find out which players should be starting in the 79th Midsummer Classic on July 15 at Yankee Stadium. Following are the voting results and the choices at each position (stats are through Thursday's games).

The voters: Jorge Arangure Jr., Steve Berthiaume, Jim Caple, Jerry Crasnick, Peter Gammons, Gerry Fraley, Jason Grey, Orel Hershiser, Eric Karabell, Jonah Keri, Bob Klapisch, Tim Kurkjian, Keith Law, Sean McAdam, Jon Miller, Amy Nelson, Rob Neyer, Buster Olney, James Quintong, Peter Pascarelli, Steve Phillips, Nate Ravitz, Phil Rogers, Enrique Rojas, John Shea, Dan Shulman, Mark Simon, Jayson Stark, Rick Sutcliffe, Fernando Vina, Eric Young and Pedro Zayas.

NATIONAL LEAGUE
AMERICAN LEAGUE
CATCHERS
Brian McCann, Braves (14)
Joe Mauer, Twins (29)
GM
R
HR
RBI
AVG
OBP
SLG
80
35
14
46
.295
.366
.535

McCann is tops among NL catchers in slugging and homers and is hitting .330 vs. lefties.
GM
R
HR
RBI
AVG
OBP
SLG
76
51
3
36
.326
.413
.447

Mauer's .326 batting average leads the American League, and he's been getting stronger each month.
Others: Geovany Soto 7, Russell Martin 8,     Bengie Molina 3 Others: A.J. Pierzynski 3
FIRST BASEMEN
Lance Berkman, Astros (27)
Kevin Youkilis, Red Sox (17)
GM
R
HR
RBI
AVG
OBP
SLG
84
74
22
68
.353
.440
.676

Berkman, who hit at a torrid .471 clip in May, is currently tied for major league lead in OPS (1.116).
GM
R
HR
RBI
AVG
OBP
SLG
79
49
13
51
.308
.377
.532

Morneau would have been a solid choice too, but Youkilis has outslugged the Twin (.532 to 483).
Others: Albert Pujols 3, Adrian Gonzalez 2 Others: Justin Morneau 13, Jason Giambi 2
SECOND BASEMEN
Chase Utley, Phillies (31)
Ian Kinsler, Rangers (28)
GM
R
HR
RBI
AVG
OBP
SLG
85
63
24
67
.300
.384
.612

Even an 0-for-24 slump couldn't keep the ultra-talented Utley from a near sweep in the voting.
GM
R
HR
RBI
AVG
OBP
SLG
83
74
13
50
.323
.381
.533

Kinsler has ignited the Rangers' league-leading offense with a breakout first half in the leadoff spot.
Others: Dan Uggla 1 Others: Dustin Pedroia 2, Placido Polanco 1,    Brian Roberts 1
SHORTSTOPS
Hanley Ramirez, Marlins (32)
Michael Young, Rangers (21)
GM
R
HR
RBI
AVG
OBP
SLG
84
72
20
41
.299
.383
.542

No other shortstop is playing at the same level as Ramirez, who's a unanimous choice at his position.
GM
R
HR
RBI
AVG
OBP
SLG
82
58
7
45
.288
.339
.421

It's slim pickings at shortstop in the AL this season, but Young has been the best of the bunch.
Others: None Others: Derek Jeter 11
THIRD BASEMEN
Chipper Jones, Braves (29)
Alex Rodriguez, Yankees (28)
GM
R
HR
RBI
AVG
OBP
SLG
74
50
17
47
.389
.483
.634

Can Jones stay healthy and chase .400? That will be among the top stories of the second half.
GM
R
HR
RBI
AVG
OBP
SLG
66
49
17
47
.316
.401
.594

Longoria is opening some eyes, but he's not ready to supplant A-Rod, who hit .366 in June.
Others: David Wright 3 Others: Evan Longoria 3, Mike Lowell 1
OUTFIELDERS
Ryan Braun, Brewers (19)
Josh Hamilton, Rangers (32)
GM
R
HR
RBI
AVG
OBP
SLG
82
45
20
58
.278
.313
.536

Braun has slumped lately, but not enough to keep the ex-third baseman from earning the most votes.
GM
R
HR
RBI
AVG
OBP
SLG
83
53
19
82
.308
.364
.554

With a major league-leading 82 RBIs, Hamilton joins Hanley Ramirez as the only unanimous choices.
Pat Burrell, Phillies (16)
Carlos Quentin, White Sox (25)
GM
R
HR
RBI
AVG
OBP
SLG
84
46
21
52
.277
.414
.591

In the Phillies' potent lineup, it's easy to overlook Burrell, but he's fifth in the majors with 1.005 OPS.

GM
R
HR
RBI
AVG
OBP
SLG
82
54
19
61
.276
.381
.519

Among the best offseason acquisitions, Quentin is second in the AL in homers and fourth in RBIs.
Ryan Ludwick, Cardinals (15)
J.D. Drew, Red Sox (13)
GM
R
HR
RBI
AVG
OBP
SLG
78
52
16
56
.292
.368
.572

Whoever expected this from Ludwick? No one. He's been among the game's pleasant surprises.
GM
R
HR
RBI
AVG
OBP
SLG
74
60
16
51
.304
.412
.577

With Big Papi out, Drew, who's never been an All-Star, has picked up in the load in Boston's No. 3 spot.

Others: Matt Holliday 13, Carlos Lee 10,          Nate McLouth 10, Xavier Nady 4, Rick Ankiel 2, Jason Bay 2, Kosuke Fukudome 1, Ken Griffey Jr. 1, Alfonso Soriano 1 Others: Jermaine Dye 9, Grady Sizemore 8,      Milton Bradley 3, Ichiro Suzuki 3, David DeJesus 1, Vladimir Guerrero 1, Manny Ramirez 1
DESIGNATED HITTERS
Albert Pujols, Cardinals (20)
Milton Bradley, Rangers (25)
GM
R
HR
RBI
AVG
OBP
SLG
73
43
17
47
.345
.470
.615

Any questions? Put a bat in his hands, and Pujols is still the game's most feared presence at the plate.
GM
R
HR
RBI
AVG
OBP
SLG
72
51
17
51
.320
.437
.611

When he's healthy, the switch-hitting Bradley has proven himself to be an offensive tour de force.

Others: Adrian Gonzalez 3, Lance Berkman 2,    Pat Burrell 2, Ryan Ludwick 2, Ryan Braun 1,      Ken Griffey Jr. 1, Dan Uggla 1 Others: Manny Ramirez 3, J.D. Drew 2,           Jason Giambi 1, Carlos Quentin 1
STARTING PITCHERS
Edinson Volquez, Reds (17)
Cliff Lee, Indians (27)
GM
IP
BB
K
W
L
ERA
18
104.2
51
113
10
3
2.24

The best pitcher of the first half, Volquez gave up two earned runs or less in his first 12 starts.
GM
IP
BB
K
W
L
ERA
16
111.2
17
93
11
1
2.26

Last year, Lee was demoted to Triple-A Buffalo. This year, he's been the undisputed ace of the AL.
Others: Tim Lincecum 11, Brandon Webb 3,      Dan Haren 1 Others: Roy Halladay 3, Justin Duchscherer 1,     Joe Saunders 1