OK, Giants fans. The bar has been set and your challenge is this: Keep Barry Bonds among the starters for the National League in the July 10 All-Star Game at AT&T Park.
The Giants’ slugger has 384,707 votes in the first round of fan balloting. He is a distant second to Carlos Beltran of the New York Mets (586,815) and just ahead of Alfonso Soriano of the Chicago Cubs (382,619) in outfield voting. Cincinnati’s Ken Griffey Jr. (347,330) and Atlanta’s Andruw Jones (346,778) figure to be the only other contenders for a starting job.
Beltran is the top vote-getter and leads a Mets-dominated early starting lineup. Catcher Paul Lo Duca, third baseman David Wright and shortstop Jose Reyes are the other Mets who would currently start along with Beltran. St. Louis first baseman Albert Pujols and Philadelphia second baseman Chase Utley are leading at their respective positions.
Besides outfield, the best position battles figure to be at catcher and second base.