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Ortiz needs boost to return to Minnesota as All-Star

Big Papi in second place for starting DH spot; online balloting runs through July 3

Ortiz needs boost to return to Minnesota as All-Star play video for Ortiz needs boost to return to Minnesota as All-Star

Red Sox slugger David Ortiz is used to setting the pace in the All-Star balloting. This time, he will need a push from his fans to earn a starting spot.

In the latest round of balloting, Ortiz remained in second place, trailing Nelson Cruz of the Orioles at designated hitter.

Cruz has 1,404,275 votes, compared to 1,036,055 for Big Papi.

Ortiz returning to Minneapolis for the All-Star Game would certainly be a big storyline. The Twins released him following the 2002 season, and the Red Sox signed him as a free agent, at which point he developed into one of the elite sluggers in the game.

Ortiz would love to play an All-Star Game at Target Field, where he is a .509 hitter (29-for-57) with nine homers, 22 RBIs and a 1.615 OPS.

Fans can cast their votes for starters at MLB.com and all 30 club sites -- online or on a mobile device -- using the 2014 All-Star Game MLB.com Ballot Sponsored by Experian until Thursday, July 3, at 11:59 p.m. ET. The 2014 All-Star Game will be played at Target Field on Tuesday, July 15.

Fans may submit up to 25 online ballots, but they can also earn a one-time bonus of 10 additional online ballots. To access these additional online ballots, you must be logged into your MLB.com account when you submit any online ballot. If you do not have an MLB.com account, register on the site in accordance with the enrollment instructions for a free MLB.com account.

Fans this year once again can participate in the 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 Home Run Derby. The 2014 Home Run Derby will be broadcast live on ESPN, ESPN HD, ESPN Deportes and ESPN Radio in the United States beginning at 8 p.m. ET on Monday, July 14.

The 2014 American League and National League All-Star teams will be unveiled on the 2014 MLB All-Star Game Selection Show during the weekend of July 5-6, with further details to follow on MLB.com. Immediately following the announcement of the AL and NL All-Star rosters, fans can begin voting to select the final player for each league's 34-man roster via the 2014 All-Star Game MLB.com Final Vote Sponsored by Experian. Fans will cast their votes from a list of five players from each league over the balloting period.

And the voting doesn't end there. The final phase of All-Star Game voting will again have fans participating in the 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 2014 All-Star Game MLB.com MVP Vote Sponsored by Pepsi, and their voice will represent 20 percent of the overall vote that determines the recipient of the Arch Ward Trophy.

MLB.com will provide extensive online coverage of the All-Star Week festivities.

The 85th All-Star Game will be televised nationally by FOX, 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 SiriusXM will also provide comprehensive All-Star Week coverage. For more information, please visit allstargame.com.

Ortiz is vying to become an All-Star for the 10th time -- all with the Red Sox. Even at the age of 38, he remains one of the most feared hitters in the game.

Dustin Pedroia is another Red Sox cornerstone who will need a push from his fans to solidify a starting spot at second base. The Mariners' Robinson Cano (1,111,880 votes) and Ian Kinsler of the Tigers (887,544) currently lead Pedroia (778,700).

For many years, Pedroia and Ortiz have been the two leaders of Boston's offense.

"Whether it's going bad or going good, they're the leaders of our everyday lineup," said John Farrell, who will manage the American League All-Stars. "It's not going to be resting upon their shoulders solely, but they're the main cogs in it."

A.J. Pierzynski, in his first year with the Red Sox, ranks fourth at catcher. Pierzynski has 491,709 votes.

AMERICAN LEAGUE ALL-STAR VOTE LEADERS

CATCHER
1. Matt Wieters, Orioles: 1,235,369
2. Brian McCann, Yankees: 827,200
3. Derek Norris, A's: 813,053
4. A.J. Pierzynski, Red Sox: 491,709
5. Kurt Suzuki, Twins: 465,202

FIRST BASE
1. Miguel Cabrera, Tigers: 1,477,420
2. Jose Abreu, White Sox: 845,059
3. Albert Pujols, Angels: 707,924
4. Chris Davis, Orioles: 659,800
5. Mark Teixeira, Yankees: 436,504

SECOND BASE
1. Robinson Cano, Mariners: 1,111,880
2. Ian Kinsler, Tigers: 887,544
3. Dustin Pedroia, Red Sox: 778,700
4. Brian Dozier, Twins: 488,524
5. Jose Altuve, Astros: 392,416

SHORTSTOP
1. Derek Jeter, Yankees: 1,376,054
2. Alexei Ramirez, White Sox: 1,212,362
3. J.J. Hardy, Orioles: 754,764
4. Jose Reyes, Blue Jays: 536,525
5. Jed Lowrie, A's: 401,798

THIRD BASE
1. Josh Donaldson, A's: 1,470,544
2. Evan Longoria, Rays: 729,092
3. Manny Machado, Orioles: 720,761
4. Adrian Beltre, Rangers: 707,952
5. Brett Lawrie, Blue Jays: 469,855

DESIGNATED HITTER
1. Nelson Cruz, Orioles: 1,404,275
2. David Ortiz, Red Sox: 1,036,055
3. Victor Martinez, Tigers: 843,215
4. Edwin Encarnacion, Blue Jays: 738,107
5. Brandon Moss, A's: 480,597

OUTFIELD
1. Jose Bautista, Blue Jays: 2,135,223
2. Mike Trout, Angels: 1,945,170
3. Melky Cabrera, Blue Jays: 1,096,784
4. Adam Jones, Orioles: 820,336
5. Jacoby Ellsbury, Yankees: 813,357
6. Yoenis Cespedes, A's: 799,123
7. Michael Brantley, Indians: 720,961
8. Carlos Beltran, Yankees: 712,154
9. Nick Markakis, Orioles: 691,023
10. Torii Hunter, Tigers: 666,116
11. Shin-Soo Choo, Rangers: 532,267
12. Alex Rios, Rangers: 483,151
13. Brett Gardner, Yankees: 453,169
14. Coco Crisp, A's: 444,433
15. David Lough, Orioles: 396,085

Ian Browne is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Brownie Points, and follow him on Twitter @IanMBrowne. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

{"event":["all_star" ] }
{"event":["all_star" ] }