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Bautista heads list of Blue Jays on All-Star ballot

Bautista heads list of Blue Jays on All-Star ballot play video for Bautista heads list of Blue Jays on All-Star ballot

Jose Bautista will be looking to make it four in a row at this year's All-Star Game in New York.

Bautista has been named to the American League All-Star team in each of the past three years, including twice being voted in as a starter by the fans. Two years ago, he broke Ken Griffey Jr.'s old record set in 1994 for most votes received through the ballot process.

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With the ballot for this year's All-Star Game released on Wednesday, the 32-year-old will once again be a strong contender for a spot on the AL squad. The Blue Jays went through a roster makeover during the offseason, but it's still Bautista who can be found in the heart of the order. And it's Bautista who remains pivotal to any potential success.

"He's a huge part of this team," manager John Gibbons recently said. "He's our top dog in the middle of the lineup. It's a totally different look when he's not in there. If we're going to do anything, we need everybody. If we're going to do anything this year, we need him to be at his best."

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 11:59 p.m. ET.

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 whom 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 8 p.m. ET on Monday, July 15.

The 2013 AL 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 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.

Other Blue Jays candidates for the All-Star Game include: catcher J.P. Arencibia, first baseman Adam Lind, second baseman Maicer Izturis, third baseman Brett Lawrie, left fielder Melky Cabrera, center fielder Colby Rasmus and designated hitter Edwin Encarnacion.

Four-time All-Star shortstop Jose Reyes would have been an easy favorite to appear in the game until he suffered a severe ankle sprain that will keep him out of action until the All-Star break. Reyes could still be voted in, but he will likely have a tough time receiving enough notoriety because of his extended absence.

Encarnacion is still looking for the first All-Star nomination of his career. He was one of the biggest snubs in 2012 after being left off the team in favor of Kansas City's Billy Butler. Despite the oversight, Encarnacion went on to finish among the league leaders in most major offensive categories.

Cabrera was named the Most Valuable Player of last year's All-Star Game in Kansas City. Cabrera led the NL to an 8-0 victory by hitting a two-run homer off Matt Harrison in the fourth inning.

Beginning Tuesday, Blue Jays fans can also cast their votes at Rogers Centre for all home games through June 22.

Gregor Chisholm is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, North of the Border, and follow him on Twitter @gregorMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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