An American League backstop battle has broken out in voting on the 2018 Camping World MLB All-Star Ballot.
• VOTE NOW: 2018 Camping World MLB All-Star Ballot
The Rays' Wilson Ramos has overtaken the Yankees' Gary Sanchez for the AL's starting spot behind the plate in the latest voting update released Tuesday. Voting to decide the starters for the 89th All-Star Game presented by Mastercard on July 17 at Washington's Nationals Park continues until 11:59 p.m. ET on July 5.
Though catcher is the only place where a change has taken place at the top, we also have a new top overall vote-getter, with Astros second baseman Jose Altuve (1,572,101) holding a slight edge over Red Sox outfielder Mookie Betts (1,568,417) among all Major Leaguers. Freddie Freeman leads the NL with 1,433,140 votes.
• National League voting update
Here are the latest results in the AL:
Video: TB@HOU: Ramos opens the scoring with a 2-run jack
1. Wilson Ramos, Rays: 678,159
2. Gary Sanchez, Yankees: 618,899
3. Brian McCann, Astros: 401,336
4. Salvador Perez, Royals: 344,915
5. Yan Gomes, Indians: 200,275
Sanchez's spot at the top with a sub-.200 batting average got a lot of attention when the first results were released last week. Ramos has a .286 average, .332 on-base percentage and .450 slugging percentage, compared to Sanchez's .194 average, .294 on-base percentage and .440 slugging percentage. Ramos has made it back into the limelight after an awful right knee injury sidelined him late during a 2016 season with the Nationals in which he made the NL All-Star squad for his first Midsummer Classic selection. The other change here is Gomes' arrival into the top five, bumping the Angels' Martin Maldonado.
Video: CLE@CWS: Abreu belts an opposite-field 2-run homer
1. Jose Abreu, White Sox: 636,666
2. Mitch Moreland, Red Sox: 472,245
3. Yuli Gurriel, Astros: 368,863
4. Albert Pujols, Angels: 336,724
5. Miguel Cabrera, Tigers: 333,130
Cabrera's season-ending ruptured left biceps tendon caused his fall from third to fifth, and Gurriel has risen two spots in this pecking order. But it's still Abreu well out in front in a year in which he's logged a .283/.338/.500 line for the White Sox.
Video: Altuve on being leading vote-getter for All-Star Game
1. Jose Altuve, Astros: 1,572,101
2. Gleyber Torres, Yankees: 534,758
3. Dee Gordon, Mariners: 244,488
4. Jason Kipnis, Indians: 156,347
5. Jed Lowrie, A's: 130,479
Altuve has more than a million votes more than his next-closest competition, so we're going to go out on a limb and suggest he's in good shape to make his fourth straight start for the AL. Now the only question is whether the reigning AL MVP Award winner, who played a big part in the Astros' just-completed 10-0 road trip, can maintain his lead in the overall voting.
Video: MIN@CLE: Ramirez crushes 21st home run of the year
1. Jose Ramirez, Indians: 893,530
2. Miguel Andujar, Yankees: 509,188
3. Alex Bregman, Astros: 410,412
4. Adrian Beltre, Rangers: 249,080
5. Mike Moustakas, Royals: 231,363
Ramirez, with 21 long balls, is already closing in on his homer total (29) from last year, when he finished third in the AL MVP Award voting, and he continues to run away with what would be his second straight starting assignment. The rest of the top five is unchanged from last week.
Video: MIA@BAL: Machado flares 2-run single to right-center
1. Manny Machado, Orioles: 671,133
2. Carlos Correa, Astros: 458,367
3. Francisco Lindor, Indians: 420,674
4. Didi Gregorius, Yankees: 413,135
5. Jean Segura, Mariners: 312,407
Machado, who leads a deep position in OPS (.945), homers (18) and RBIs (53), continues to be at the top of the heap here, but there were changes below him. Correa, who has been productive since his return from right side discomfort, usurped the second spot from Lindor. And Segura, who has put up an .852 OPS for the surprising Mariners, entered the top five, knocking out the Angels' Andrelton Simmons.
Video: BOS@BAL: Betts belts 1st homer since coming off DL
1. Mookie Betts, Red Sox: 1,568,417
2. Mike Trout, Angels: 1,323,292
3. Aaron Judge, Yankees: 1,061,370
4. Michael Brantley, Indians: 518,350
5. George Springer, Astros: 511,815
6. Andrew Benintendi, Red Sox: 509,780
7. Brett Gardner, Yankees: 330,970
8. Marwin Gonzalez, Astros: 300,694
9. Mitch Haniger, Mariners: 295,057
10. Josh Reddick, Astros: 278,332
11. Nicholas Castellanos, Tigers: 256,889
12. Eddie Rosario, Twins: 248,451
13. Aaron Hicks, Yankees: 239,594
14. Jackie Bradley Jr., Red Sox: 237,937
15. Ben Gamel, Mariners: 151,097
The three starting spots seem pretty well settled here, as Trout (.332/.464/.688), Betts (.340/.419/.699) and Judge (.275/.395/.558) are all having absurdly good seasons in big markets. The only changes here are Haniger's jump from 13th to ninth, Reddick's leapfrog of Castellanos, Rosario and Bradley trading spots, and Gamel bumping the Indians' Tyler Naquin from the top 15.
Video: BOS@BAL: Martinez mashes his 22nd homer of the season
1. J.D. Martinez, Red Sox: 1,119,263
2. Giancarlo Stanton, Yankees: 478,872
3. Evan Gattis, Astros: 363,362
4. Shohei Ohtani, Angels: 350,579
5. Edwin Encarnacion, Indians: 260,915
With Ohtani out with an elbow injury and Gattis continuing to assert himself as one of the most productive players in baseball over the past month, those two flipped rankings in this week's update. But the top two spots are unchanged, and Martinez is well on his way to a much-deserved first All-Star selection since 2015, and his first turn as a starter.
Fans may cast votes for starters at MLB.com and all 30 club sites -- on computers, tablets and smartphones -- exclusively online using the 2018 Camping World MLB All-Star Ballot until Thursday, July 5, at 11:59 p.m. ET. On smartphones and tablets, fans can also access the ballot via the MLB At Bat and MLB Ballpark mobile apps. Each fan can vote up to five times in any 24-hour period, for a maximum of 35 ballots cast.
Following the announcement of this year's All-Star starters, reserves and pitchers, fans should return to MLB.com and cast their 2018 Camping World MLB All-Star Final Vote for the final player on each league's roster. Then on Tuesday, July 17, while watching the 2018 All-Star Game presented by Mastercard live on FOX, fans may visit MLB.com to submit their choices for the Ted Williams Most Valuable Player Award presented by Chevrolet with the 2018 MLB All-Star Game MVP Vote.
The 89th Midsummer Classic, at Nationals Park in Washington, D.C., will be televised nationally by FOX Sports; in Canada by Rogers Sportsnet and RDS; and worldwide by partners in more than 180 countries. FOX Deportes will provide Spanish-language coverage in the United States, while ESPN Radio and ESPN Radio Deportes will provide exclusive national radio coverage of the All-Star Game. MLB Network, MLB.com and SiriusXM also will provide comprehensive All-Star Week coverage.
For more information about MLB All-Star Week and to purchase tickets, visit AllStarGame.com and follow @MLB and @AllStarGame on social media.
Anthony Castrovince has been a reporter for MLB.com since 2004. Read his columns, listen to his podcast and follow him on Twitter at @Castrovince.