The return of the Midsummer Classic after a rare year off means the return of All-Star Game voting. As was the case in 2019, Major League Baseball will use a two-phase fan-voting process, made easier with the help of Google to determine the starting position players for the All-Star Game presented by Mastercard, which will be held Tuesday, July 13, at Denver’s Coors Field.
With the launch of the 2021 Google MLB All-Star Ballot, the voting is underway.
From now through 4 p.m. ET on Thursday, June 24, fans will vote via a ballot of club-nominated players at every position. That’s Phase 1. From there, the top three vote-getters at each position (and top nine outfielders) in each league will advance to Phase 2, which will last from noon on Monday, June 28, through 2 p.m. on Thursday, July 1, to help finalize the starters.
Because 2019 was the first year of the two-phase voting process -- and because 2019 feels like ages ago -- here’s a handy refresher on how this works.
Do fans still select the All-Star starters?
Yes. The fans remain responsible for the position players in American League and National League lineups -- that’s eight players in the NL and nine in the AL, including the designated hitter.
The difference is that the voting process, as we once knew it, now only constitutes one element of that selection. Where once the top vote-getter at each position during a single voting period advanced straight to the All-Star starting lineup, now the top three vote-getters at each position per league (and top nine in the outfield) will advance from Phase 1 to Phase 2.
When is Phase 1 held?
It begins today, and it will continue until 4 p.m. ET on Thursday, June 24. Phase 1 will be used to determine the top three vote-getters at every position but the outfield, where the top nine vote-getters will advance to Phase 2.
How can I vote?
There are two ways:
- On MLB platforms, including MLB.com, all 30 club sites and the MLB and MLB Ballpark mobile apps.
- On Google Search (in the U.S. and Canada only), fans can most efficiently vote for any player on the ballot by entering a player's name (for example, “Vladimir Guerrero Jr.”), taking you directly to that player's section of the ballot. Alternately, fans can go directly to the Google ballot or enter searches such as “MLB vote” or “MLB All-Star vote” in the search bar. These searches will trigger a full All-Star ballot within the search results.
The combined vote totals from these various platforms will determine the ballot winners.
When will the finalists be revealed?
During the 2021 Google MLB All-Star Ballot Finalists Show at noon on Sunday, June 27, on MLB Network.
When is Phase 2 held?
Voting will launch at noon on Monday, June 28, and conclude at 2 p.m. on Thursday, July 1.
Do vote totals from Phase 1 carry over to Phase 2?
No. The slate will be wiped clean for the three players per position (and nine outfielders) in each league who advance to that part of the process.
How often can I vote during Phase 1?
On MLB platforms, fans can submit up to five ballots per 24-hour period. So if you cast your first vote at 9 a.m. one day, you can vote five times total between then and 9 a.m. the following day.
At Google Search, using the search “MLB All-Star vote” or searching for player names, fans can fill out one complete ballot and vote for every position, or vote for up to 17 unique players per day. So if, say, you want to vote for multiple NL first basemen, you can do so, but each one will count against your total of 17 players.
Also, note that you can vote for a specific player only once per day via the Google ballot.
How many times can I vote during Phase 2?
Fans can submit just one ballot on MLB platforms and may submit up to 17 unique player votes during that 74-hour voting period. So make it count!
When will the winners of Phase 2 (AKA the starters) be revealed?
During the 2021 Google MLB All-Star Starters Reveal at 9 p.m. ET on July 1 on ESPN. So mere hours after the voting concludes.
When will the rest of the All-Star Game rosters be announced?
During the 2021 Google MLB All-Star Selection Show on July 4 on ESPN (exact time TBA).
Has the selection process for pitchers and reserves changed at all?
It has not changed from the 2019 format. But you might not remember that, as of 2019, the final roster spots in each league are no longer determined by what was known as the Final Vote. All of the pitchers and position player reserves will be chosen through a combination of Player Ballot selections and choices made by the Commissioner’s Office.
As is tradition, the two teams will be managed by last year’s World Series skippers -- Dave Roberts (Dodgers) in the NL and Kevin Cash (Rays) in the AL -- and they will make the decisions on batting orders and starting pitchers.
Why are there two rounds of voting?
Phase 1 is an opportunity to improve the fan experience surrounding baseball’s signature summer showcase, combining the excitement of the Final Vote and the success of the 2019 Starters Election. It also helps even out the instances in which a player’s early-season performance had an outsized influence on his vote totals. By having what amounts to a “runoff” round closer to the game, fans will be making more timely choices from the list of players who advance to Phase 2.
We saw this play out in 2019 when four players who made the final ballot ended up in the starting lineup, even though they were not in the lead at the end of the first phase. Those four were Carlos Santana, DJ LeMahieu, and Hunter Pence in the AL, and Ketel Marte in the NL.
Are there any other major changes to the All-Star Game festivities?
This will mark the first year in which the All-Star festivities are intertwined with the MLB Draft, which will be held July 11-13 in Denver.
As for the game itself, as was the case in 2019 and as is the case in the 2020 and '21 regular season, should the Midsummer Classic go to extra innings, both clubs will start the 10th inning -- and all subsequent extra innings -- with a runner on second base. Players who have already left the game will be allowed to re-enter as runners. This is aimed at expediting the ending for a game that, since 2017, no longer has a bearing on home-field advantage in the World Series.
The 91st Midsummer Classic will be televised nationally by FOX Sports; in Canada by Rogers Sportsnet and RDS; and worldwide by partners in more than 180 countries. During the game, fans may visit MLB.com and the 30 club sites to submit their choices for the Ted Williams Most Valuable Player Award presented by Chevrolet. FOX Deportes will provide Spanish-language coverage in the United States, while ESPN Radio and ESPN Radio Deportes will provide exclusive national radio coverage. MLB Network, MLB.com and SiriusXM also will provide comprehensive All-Star Week coverage. For more information about MLB All-Star Week, including ticket information and updates, please visit AllStarGame.com and follow @MLB and @AllStarGame on social media.