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Baseball will announce rosters for the July 15 All-Star Game on Sunday. But why wait that long? USA TODAY Sports' Paul White breaks down who will be headed to the Twin Cities. Your American Leaguers:

First base: It isn't the usual logjam at this premier position but it's still a tough call. No arguments with two-time MVP Miguel Cabrera as the voting leader and there's no ignoring the power surge of Toronto's Edwin Encarnacion. But that leaves out the even more powerful Jose Abreu of the White Sox – for now, at least.

Second base: Robinson Cano of the Mariners will win the fan vote, but he would rank third on our list. Again, that creates a difficult call for the second spot between the guys we have ahead of Cano – Detroit's Ian Kinsler and Houston's Jose Altuve. It's Kinsler by a hair.

Shortstop: At the risk of sacrilege – of course Derek Jeter doesn't deserve the spot on this season's statistical merit. Yes, he'll start and, no, we're not about to dissent. Even without Jeter, there's no clear-cut front-runner based on performance. But Alexei Ramirez of the White Sox is our pick for the guy who has to go out there when Jeter leaves the game – a tough call over Erick Aybar of the Angels.

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Third base: Josh Donaldson will win the fan vote – no serious disagreement there. Now, it gets tricky. Kyle Seager

of the Mariners has the accumulation of stats and the strong defense to merit the second spot. We'll go that route, fully aware of a breakout from Cleveland's Lonnie Chisenhall and the enduring greatness of the Rangers' Adrian Beltre.

Outfield: The fans have it right with Mike Trout of the Angels and Jose Bautista of the Blue Jays. And we can only hope the late surge by Oakland's Yoenis Cespedes for the third spot holds up. He's moved ahead of Toronto's Melky Cabrera, who would have taken up a spot we'd rather hand out elsewhere. The guy who deserves it is Cleveland's Michael Brantley, so he's one of our backups, along with Baltimore's Adam Jones and Kansas City's Alex Gordon.

Catcher: The fan vote for Baltimore's injured Matt Wieters creates a freebie. Kansas City's Sal Perez is clearly the man this year. We'll add Cleveland's Yan Gomes as our backup.

DH: It's good that Baltimore's Nelson Cruz was on the ballot as a designated hitter – we don't have to bump a deserving outfielder for him. But it's unfortunate that he takes a slot that could just as easily go to Detroit's Victor Martinez.

Starting pitchers: The first five are solid, led by Japanese tandem Masahiro Tanaka of the Yankees and Yu Darvish

of the Rangers. Matching them all season is Felix Hernandez of the Mariners and we'll also take dominating Chris Sale

of the White Sox and the breakthrough year of the Angels' Garrett Richards.

Relief pitchers: It's not a particularly strong season for closers in the AL but the set-up men make up for it. We'll fill our first three slots with the ninth-inning guys who are standing out – Koji Uehara of the Red Sox, Sean Doolittle of the Athletics and Greg Holland of the Royals.

The rest: We had enough tough calls among position players – most caused by fan-voting winners we'd quibble with – to provide three obvious additions: White Sox first baseman Abreu, the Astros' Altuve and Tigers DH Martinez, who also could be a third catcher in a pinch.

That leaves five slots to get us to 33 and we still don't have representatives from the Twins and Rays. Minnesota's best candidates are starting pitcher Phil Hughes and second baseman Brian Dozier. We already have three second basemen, so Hughes is our pick.

The Tampa Bay requirement is an imperfect solution to a difficult choice – picking among dominant set-up men. Jake McGee

of the Rays is in that mix so he's the default first choice over Dellin Betances of the Yankees and Wade Davis of the Royals. But there's no ignoring Betances' strikeout numbers along with his lack of baserunners, so we'll also add him.

That leaves two spots and several more pitchers worthy of inclusion. There's a strong chance several pitchers already on our roster – most notably Tanaka and Darvish – might not be available, creating more space. For now, though, we'll fill it out with starters Scott Kazmir of the Athletics and Mark Buehrle of the Blue Jays.

Our final vote candidates:

  • SS Erick Aybar, Angels
  • 3B Lonnie Chisenhall, Indians
  • RP Wade Davis, Royals
  • SP Dallas Keuchel, Astros
  • C Derek Norris, Athletics

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