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Castro back on All-Star ballot, with several first-timers

Rizzo, Valbuena, Castillo and Schierholtz make inaugural appearances

Castro back on All-Star ballot, with several first-timers play video for Castro back on All-Star ballot, with several first-timers

CINCINNATI -- Two-time All-Star shortstop Starlin Castro doesn't want to miss a game all season, and that includes the July 16 All-Star Game at Citi Field.

Castro, who represented the Cubs last year, headlines the list of players on this year's All-Star ballot, released Wednesday. The shortstop is joined by first baseman Anthony Rizzo, second baseman Darwin Barney, third baseman Luis Valbuena, catcher Welington Castillo, and outfielders David DeJesus, Alfonso Soriano and Nate Schierholtz on the National League ballot.

Soriano, 37, is a seven-time All-Star, while this is the first time Rizzo, Valbuena, Castillo and Schierholtz are on the ballot.

Fans can cast their votes for starters at MLB.com and all 30 club sites -- online or via your mobile device -- using the 2013 All-Star Game MLB.com Ballot until Thursday, July 4, at 10:59 p.m. CT.

Fans may submit twenty-five (25) online ballots during the voting period, but can also earn a one-time bonus of ten (10) additional online ballots. To access these additional online ballots, you must be logged into your MLB.com account when you submit any online ballot. If you do not have an MLB.com account, visit www.mlb.com and register in accordance with the enrollment instructions for a free MLB.com account.

Fans can also once again participate in the Home Run Derby Fan Poll. Fans will have the opportunity to select three players in each league who they would most like to see participate in the Home Run Derby. The 2013 Home Run Derby -- part of Gatorade All-Star Workout Day -- will be broadcast live on ESPN, ESPN HD, ESPN Deportes and ESPN Radio in the United States beginning at 7 p.m. CT on Monday, July 15.

The 2013 American League and National League All-Star teams will be unveiled on Sunday, July 7, on the 2013 MLB All-Star Game Selection Show, televised nationally on TBS. Baseball fans around the world will then be able to select the final player on each team via the All-Star Game Final Vote sponsored by freecreditscore.com on MLB.com.

And the voting doesn't end there. The final phase of All-Star Game voting will again have fans participating in the official voting for the Ted Williams All-Star Game Most Valuable Player Award presented by Chevrolet. During the Midsummer Classic, fans will vote exclusively online at MLB.com via the 2013 All-Star Game MLB.com MVP Vote, and their voice will represent 20 percent of the official vote determining the recipient of the Arch Ward Trophy.

The 2013 All-Star Game will be played at Citi Field in New York on Tuesday, July 16. Come to MLB.com for extensive online coverage of the All-Star Week festivities.

The 84th All-Star Game will be televised nationally by FOX Sports, in Canada by Rogers Sportsnet and RDS, and worldwide by partners in more than 200 countries via MLB International's independent feed. ESPN Radio and ESPN Radio Deportes will provide national radio coverage of the All-Star Game. MLB Network and SiriusXM also will also provide comprehensive All-Star Week coverage. For more information, please visit allstargame.com.

Castro, 23, ranks among the NL leaders in hits this season, and has matched his longest career hit streak. He has appeared in 214 consecutive games, longest active streak in the NL and second-longest in all of baseball, trailing only Detroit's Prince Fielder. Barney, 27, is the reigning NL Gold Glove winner at second base. Rizzo, 23, ranks among the tops in the league in home runs and RBIs.

Fans can cast their All-Star ballots at Wrigley Field starting Monday, when the Cubs return home to play host to the Padres, and can continue to do so through June 11.

Carrie Muskat is a reporter for MLB.com. She writes a blog, Muskat Ramblings, and you can follow her on Twitter @CarrieMuskat. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

{"event":["all_star" ] }
{"event":["all_star" ] }