Andruw in need of votes to start Classic
Center fielder falls to fifth place in latest National League update
Andruw Jones' recent offensive surge has coincided with a drop in his position in the National League All-Star voting. But the Braves center fielder is still within striking distance to become one of the NL's starting outfielders.
Jones has shown signs of breaking out of his season-long slump, raising his average to .230 through Saturday after it hovered near .200 for much of May. He was fourth among NL outfielders when the ballot standings were released last week for the first time. This week, he has dropped to fifth, joining several teammates with a chance to earn a starting spot through fan voting.
Last year, Jones and teammates Brian McCann and Edgar Renteria earned All-Star selections via votes cast by fellow NL players and managers. This year, each of them has gained respectable consideration through the votes that fans have cast online and at every Major League stadium.
Support has also been shown for Chipper Jones, who is third in voting at third base despite being placed on the disabled list last week, and Jeff Francoeur, currently eighth in the outfield voting.
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 11:59 p.m. ET.
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.
Andruw Jones, who entered Monday's game with three home runs since May 27, dropped to fifth this week when Reds center fielder Ken Griffey Jr. jumped over him into third place. Jones, who also trails Carlos Beltran, Alfonso Soriano and Barry Bonds, has made five All-Star Game appearances, but he has never been voted into a starting role by the fans.
McCann, who has battled occasional slumps since injuring his left ring finger toward the end of April, ranks second among NL catchers, behind New York's Paul Lo Duca.
Renteria is third among NL shortstops, trailing New York's Jose Reyes and J.J. Hardy of the Brewers.
Before a right hand injury forced him to miss some time this month, Chipper Jones was producing some impressive offensive numbers. He has dropped from second place in the initial release of ballot standings, now trailing New York's David Wright and Florida's Miguel Cabrera in voting among NL third basemen.
Selecting the rosters isn't the end of the fun in 2007, either. 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.
Jeff Lutz is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.