New York Albert Pujols will be in a familiar spot when St. Louis hosts the 80th All-Star game. Boston knuckleballer Tim Wakefield is headed for a brand-new situation.
Pujols was the leading vote-getter in balloting for the Midsummer Classic announced Sunday by Major League Baseball, giving the Cardinals first baseman the start in his home ballpark.
Pujols has made the NL team eight times in nine seasons and will be making his sixth start.
Wakefield made his first All-Star roster in his 17th season, one of a major-league-high six Red Sox headed to Busch Stadium for the July 14 game.
Dustin Pedroia passed Texas’ Ian Kinsler in a close vote at second, and left fielder Jason Bay also won a spot in the lineup.
Red Sox first baseman Kevin Youkilis was edged by Yankees slugger Mark Teixeira. Youkilis made the team, anyway, along with Boston ace Josh Beckett and closer Jonathan Papelbon.
The Mets lead the NL with four selections. Center fielder Carlos Beltran and third baseman David Wright were both elected by the fans.
New York ace Johan Santana and closer Francisco Rodriguez were selected by the players.
Starting for the NL: Pujols at first, Philadelphia second baseman Chase Utley, Florida shortstop Hanley Ramirez, Wright at third, Cardinals catcher Yadier Molina and Beltran, Milwaukee’s Ryan Braun and Philadelphia’s Raul Ibanez in the outfield.
The AL starting lineup: Teixeira at first, Pedroia at second, Yankees shortstop Derek Jeter, Tampa Bay third baseman Evan Longoria, outfielders Bay, Josh Hamilton of Texas and Ichiro Suzuki of Seattle, and Minnesota catcher Joe Mauer.