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Avisail trending up in All-Star balloting

MLB.com @scottmerkin

CHICAGO -- White Sox right fielder Avisail Garcia's numbers are improving, and that reference doesn't solely focus on his breakout 2017 season.

Garcia checked in at fifth place among American League outfielders in the second update of the 2017 Esurance MLB All-Star Game Ballot released Tuesday. He stood at sixth in the first round of voting.

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CHICAGO -- White Sox right fielder Avisail Garcia's numbers are improving, and that reference doesn't solely focus on his breakout 2017 season.

Garcia checked in at fifth place among American League outfielders in the second update of the 2017 Esurance MLB All-Star Game Ballot released Tuesday. He stood at sixth in the first round of voting.

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"It would mean a lot because I'm working hard and have been working hard this whole season," Garcia said. "It would be an honor to represent my team in the All-Star Game."

"I appreciate all the support from the fans that they give to me," Garcia said. "I always try to be available for the fans, signing balls and talking with them, so when they support me, I appreciate that."

Rookie Aaron Judge moved into the top spot with 1,251,543 votes, pushing Mike Trout into second at 1,155,356. The race gets closer after that, with Cleveland's Michael Brantley third at 554,620, Boston's Mookie Betts fourth at 519,146 and Garcia at 479,349. No other White Sox player ranked in the top 15 among outfielders or top five among other position players.

Through 53 games and 216 plate appearances entering Tuesday's series opener at the Rays, Garcia was hitting .330 with eight homers, 38 RBIs and a .902 OPS. White Sox hitting coach Todd Steverson and executive vice president Ken Williams talked recently about the changes made this year by Garcia in terms of minimizing slumps and building off the positive.

"Nobody wants to look bad," Steverson said. "And when you allow yourself to not look as good as you want for an extended period of time, people make assumptions of who you are or what you are.

"Obviously, those were well chronicled of what they thought [Garcia] was. I'm not sure he is out to disprove everybody else as much as he's proving to himself that that's not who he is. He's doing a better job of it."

Fans may cast votes for starters at MLB.com and all 30 club sites -- on computers, tablets and smartphones -- exclusively online using the 2017 Esurance MLB All-Star Game Ballot until Thursday, June 29, at 10:59 p.m. CT. On smartphones and tablets, fans can also access the ballot via the MLB.com At Bat and MLB.com Ballpark mobile apps. Vote up to five times in any 24-hour period for a maximum of 35 ballots cast.

Following the announcement of the 2017 All-Star starters, reserves and pitchers, fans should return to MLB.com and cast their 2017 Esurance MLB All-Star Game Final Vote for the final player on each league's All-Star roster. Then on Tuesday, July 11, while watching the 2017 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 2017 MLB All-Star Game MVP Vote.

The 88th Midsummer Classic, at Marlins Park in Miami, will be televised nationally by FOX Sports; in Canada by Rogers Sportsnet and RDS; and worldwide by partners in more than 160 countries. ESPN Radio and ESPN Radio Deportes will provide exclusive national radio coverage, while MLB Network, MLB.com and SiriusXM will have comprehensive All-Star Week coverage. For more information about MLB All-Star Week and to purchase tickets, please visit AllStarGame.com and follow @AllStarGame on social media.

Scott Merkin has covered the White Sox for MLB.com since 2003. Read his blog, Merk's Works, follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin, on Facebook and listen to his podcast.

Chicago White Sox