Ordonez makes a case for All-Star bid

Ordonez makes a case for All-Star bid

Magglio Ordonez is already making a case as an American League MVP candidate. Now, he's climbing the charts among AL outfielders in All-Star balloting.

After ranking seventh in the initial balloting results released last week, Ordonez is up to fifth in the latest update, putting him two spots shy of a starting spot. He's one of a handful of Tigers in position to crack the lineup for the American League at next month's Midsummer Classic at San Francisco's AT&T Park.

The more Ordonez hits, the more attention he gets. His 7-for-10 performance over a two-game span at Cleveland last weekend briefly gave him the American League lead in batting average to go with RBIs, doubles and total bases. His slugging percentage was more than 50 points higher than anyone else in the Major Leagues as of the weekend, and he and Gary Sheffield were second and first in runs scored.

The combination of those statistics is finally attracting numbers in the ballot category, where Vladimir Guerrero, Manny Ramirez, Ichiro Suzuki and Torii Hunter rank ahead of him.

Catcher Ivan Rodriguez remains the only Tiger leading his position in balloting, though the lead remains slim in what is developing as a four-player competition. Rodriguez, whose 8-for-15 series against the Indians raised his batting average 20 points, is currently holding off Jason Varitek, Joe Mauer and Jorge Posada for the starting nod.

Other positions remain unchanged. Placido Polanco continues to stand second behind Robinson Cano for the lead at second base, while Carlos Guillen and Brandon Inge stand third at shortstop and third base, respectively. Sean Casey is still fifth among AL first basemen, though three of the four players ahead of them are primarily designated hitters.

All-Star Game Coverage

Fans can cast their votes for starters up to 25 times with the Monster 2007 All-Star Online Ballot at MLB.com and all 30 club sites until Thursday, June 28 at 10:59 p.m. CT.

Fans will again be given the opportunity to cast an All-Star vote immediately following the 2007 MLB All-Star Game Selection Show Presented by Chevrolet, which will be televised by Turner Sports on Sunday, July 1. Baseball fans around the world will be able select the final player on each All-Star team via the Monster.com 2007 All-Star Final Vote.

Concluding the All-Star balloting process, fans will have the opportunity to participate in the official voting for the Ted Williams Most Valuable Player presented by Chevrolet at the All-Star Game via the Monster.com 2007 All-Star Game MVP Vote at MLB.com.

The All-Star Game will be televised nationally by FOX Sports and televised around the world by Major League Baseball International. ESPN Radio will provide exclusive national radio coverage, while MLB.com will offer extensive online coverage and MLB Radio will have exclusive play-by-play coverage of the game on the Internet.

Jason Beck is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.