By Pat O'Rourke
The latest update of the MLB All-Star ‘Final Vote’ was released Monday, and Red Sox closer Koji Uehara is second among the five candidates for the final AL roster spot for this year’s All-Star game.
Uehara trails only Toronto’s Steve Delabar in the AL balloting, and leads New York’s David Robertson, Detroit’s Joaquin Benoit, and Texas’s Tanner Scheppers.
On the NL side, Atlanta Braves first baseman Freddie Freeman leads the way, with Dodgers phenom Yasiel Puig trailing him in second. Fellow Dodger and former Red Sox first baseman Adrian Gonzalez rounds out NL balloting, sitting in 5th place behind San Francisco’s Hunter Pence and Washington’s Ian Desmond.
Fans have until 4 pm Thursday to make their pick on MLB.com.
Uehara is the fifth Red Sox player to be nominated for the final AL roster spot since its inception in 2002. Johnny Damon (2002), Jason Varitek (2003), and Hideki Okajima (2007) were all the vote-getter in their respective years on the ballot. Kevin Youkilis is the only Sox player to be nominated and not win the final vote, when he was edged out by the Yankees Nick Swisher in 2010.