2011 AL All-Star Voting: Russell Martin Being Challenged For Catching Spot

With fan voting for the 2011 All-Star Game coming to a close later this week, five New York Yankees still lead in balloting for starting spots on the American League All-Star Team. Yankee catcher Russell Martin, however, is facing a late challenge from Detroit's Alex Avila for the starting nod.

Martin has 2,779,592 votes to Avila's 2,345,065. Martin led by 619,086 two weeks ago, but just 434,527 now. Avila is hitting .304 with 10 home run and 345 RBI. He has thrown out 38 percent of runners trying to steal. Martin is hitting just .230 with nine runs and 30 RBI. He has thrown out 29 percent of runners attempting to score.

Second baseman Robinson Cano, third baseman, shortstop Derek Jeter and outfielder Curtis Granderson are all currently among American League starters. Jeter leads Cleveland's Asdrubal Cabrera by roughly 500,000 votes despite having spent the last two weeks on the disabled list with a calf strain. Yankee first baseman Mark Teixeira is about one million votes behind Boston's Adrian Gonzalez for that starting spot.

Fans can cast their votes for starters up to 25 times at MLB.com and all 30 club sites — online or via your mobile device — using the 2011 All-Star Game MLB.com Ballot Sponsored by Sprint until June 30 at 11:59 p.m. ET.

Rosters will be announced during the 2011 All-Star Game Selection Show on TBS on July 3. Baseball fans around the world will then be able to select the final player on each team via the 2011 All-Star Game Final Vote Sponsored by Sprint.

The July 12 All-Star Game will be televised by FOX.

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