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Help push Cubs over top into ASG starting roles

Baez, Rizzo, Bryant, Russell, Contreras within top 3 at respective positions in latest update
MLB.com @CarrieMuskat

CHICAGO -- Javier Baez is the first player in Cubs history with at least 20 doubles, five triples, 15 homers and 60 RBIs prior to the All-Star break, but he needs some votes to get to the All-Star Game.

VOTE: 2018 Camping World MLB All-Star Ballot

CHICAGO -- Javier Baez is the first player in Cubs history with at least 20 doubles, five triples, 15 homers and 60 RBIs prior to the All-Star break, but he needs some votes to get to the All-Star Game.

VOTE: 2018 Camping World MLB All-Star Ballot

Cubs backstop Willson Contreras remained in second place for National League catchers, while Baez dropped to third at second base in the latest All-Star balloting update, released Monday.

Along with Contreras, first baseman Anthony Rizzo and third baseman Kris Bryant all in second place at their respective positions in the latest balloting. Baez, who was named NL Player of the Week on Monday, and Cubs shortstop Addison Russell are third at their respective positions.

Video: CHC@LAD: Rizzo picks up 4 hits against the Dodgers

Baez, who has 21 doubles, six triples, 16 homers and 61 RBIs, has received 1,586,888 votes and now trails Braves second baseman Ozzie Albies (1,857,185) and the Reds' Scooter Gennett (1,689,393).

Baez isn't looking at the voting totals.

"I try to stay focused," Baez said. "I try to do everything I can for the All-Star Game. But at the same time, I'm trying to stay away from the numbers."

Contreras and the Giants' Buster Posey were separated by about 92,000 votes last week. Posey has a slightly larger lead in the latest balloting, receiving 1,384,631 votes to Contreras' 1,240,132. Neither Contreras nor Baez has been named to an All-Star team.

Video: CHC@CIN: Contreras homers to right-center field

Braves first baseman Freddie Freeman is the top NL votegetter with 2,905,301 votes. Rizzo, a three-time All-Star, has gotten 1,178,915 votes.

Two-time All-Star Bryant (1,370,631 votes) continues to trail the Rockies' Nolan Arenado (2,326,711).

Russell has received 1,026,014 votes. The Giants' Brandon Crawford (2,303,516) leads NL shortstops, followed by the Braves' Dansby Swanson (1,162,263).

Among NL outfielders, the Cubs' trio has held steady. Jason Heyward is seventh with 1,018,320 votes, Kyle Schwarber is eighth (939,907) and Ben Zobrist ninth (900,316). The Braves' Nick Markakis leads all outfielders with 2,457,648 votes.

The Cubs also are hoping outfielder Albert Almora Jr. receives some recognition, though fans will have to write his name in on the ballot with Chicago's three allotted outfield spots accounted for in Heyward, Zobrist and Schwarber. Almora entered Monday ranked second in the NL in batting with a .331 average behind Gennett (.332).

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 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.

Video: CHC@COL: Baez tallies four hits and RBI's in Colorado

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, please visit AllStarGame.com and follow @MLB and @AllStarGame on social media.

Carrie Muskat has covered the Cubs since 1987, and for MLB.com since 2001. You can follow her on Twitter @CarrieMuskat.

Chicago Cubs, Javier Baez, Kris Bryant, Willson Contreras, Anthony Rizzo