Rickie Weeks now leads NL second basemen in All-Star balloting

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The last update in National League All-Star voting before the final results are announced on Sunday just hit the wires. Here’s where it stands:

C: Brian McCann
1B: Albert Pujols
2B: Rickie Weeks
3B: Placido Polanco
SS: Troy Tulowitzki
OF: Ryan Braun
OF: Lance Berkman
OF: Matt Holliday

Of note is the fact that Weeks has passed Brandon Phillips for the first time and leads him by fewer than 80,000 votes. Prince Fielder is second in first base voting, moving ahead of Joey Votto and thus likely to start given Pujols’ unavailability. Jose Reyes continues to get boned at shortstop. Stupid Mountain Time Zone bias.

If form holds — and if the MLB PR people don’t bust a gut laughing as they try to put together a response to Frank McCourt’s bankruptcy filing — we’ll get the penultimate AL voting results tomorrow.

Astros’ bullpen throws combined one-hitter for MLB-best 30th win

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The Astros’ bullpen did yeoman’s work in place of the injured Dallas Keuchel on Monday against the Tigers. Keuchel is temporarily sidelined with a pinched nerve in his neck.

Brad Peacock made the spot start, limiting the Tigers to one hit and two walks with eight strikeouts over 4 1/3 innings. Chris Devenski took over with one out in the fifth, finishing out that inning as well as the sixth and seventh, facing the minimum. Will Harris pitched a perfect eighth and Ken Giles closed out the 1-0 victory in the ninth. Devenski, Harris, and Giles each had two strikeouts.

The Astros scored their only run in the bottom of the first inning as George Springer drew a leadoff walk, then scored on Jose Altuve‘s one-out double. Tigers starter Brad Fulmer pitched well enough to win on most days, giving up the lone run in seven frames.

After Monday’s win, the Astros became the first team to reach 30 wins, sitting on a 30-15 record. With a +55 run differential, even their expected record matches up with their actual record.

Brandon Phillips hit his 200th career home run

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Braves second baseman Brandon Phillips became the 337th player in baseball history to hit 200 career home runs, driving a solo home run to left-center field during Monday night’s home game against the Pirates. Phillips is the 14th second baseman (who played a min. of 75 percent of his career games at the position) to rack up at least 200 career home runs.

Phillips, 35, entered Monday’s action batting .290/.345/.405 with two home runs and 12 RBI in 142 plate appearances. If he’s anything, he’s consistent, as he finished with an adjusted OPS between 90-99 (100 is average) every year between 2012-16 and it was sitting at 97 coming into Monday.