The All-Star ballots are out

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Major League Baseball just announced that, as of now, All-Star balloting is underway. The ballots — all online, we don’t do the paper ones anymore — are available here.

You can cast five ballots in any 24-hour period. Of course, there are many ways to get around those limits if you know anything about the Internet. That would also require, however, you caring to stuff an All-Star Game ballot box, which seems like a somewhat questionable use of your time. You do you, though.

As for the ballots themselves, here’s the National League:

 

And here’s the American League:

There are a couple of weird things in there. Most notably seeing Ian Desmond at first base for the Rockies instead of Mark Reynolds when Desmond has played one game and Reynolds is the best hitter on the Rockies so far. Back in the day of paper ballots I’d get that but why couldn’t they have changed that by now?

Oh well, doesn’t matter. Many of the guys elected will beg out. None of this matters. At least not in a serious way. Just go with it. It’s the All-Star Game.

Pujols hits 701st career home run, connects for Cardinals

albert pujols
Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images
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ST. LOUIS — Cardinals slugger Albert Pujols hit his 701st home run, connecting Friday night against the Pittsburgh Pirates.

Pujols launched a slider from former teammate Johan Oviedo over the Big Mac Land sign in left field at Busch Stadium. The solo drive in the fourth inning made it 1-all.

Pujols faced Oviedo for the first time and made the 24-year-old righty the 456th different pitcher he’s homered against.

The St. Louis star hadn’t homered in a week since hitting No. 699 and 700 at Dodger Stadium last Friday. Pujols had gone 10 at-bats without a home run after two starts and one pinch-hit appearance.

The Busch Stadium crowd gave the 42-year-old Pujols a long standing ovation before he came out of the Cardinals dugout to tip his cap for a curtain call.

Pujols hit his 22nd home run this season for the NL Central champion Cardinals.

Pujols is fourth on the career home run list behind Barry Bonds (762), Hank Aaron (755) and Babe Ruth (714).