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Beckham on Classic ballot for first time

Beckham on Classic ballot for first time

CHICAGO -- In less than one year of Major League service time, Gordon Beckham has already become one of the faces of the White Sox organization.

This Chicago fan favorite learned the defensive position of third base on the fly and was recognized as the American League's top rookie in 2009 through two votes of his peers. Now, as a veteran, and as the South Siders' new starting second baseman, the next step for Beckham is a little All-Star recognition.

Beckham will certainly have a chance to be voted into the 2010 Midsummer Classic as a starter, making his first appearance on the All-Star ballot. Beckham is joined by eight of his teammates, including representation at the designated-hitter slot, with the 2010 Midsummer Classic to be played at the home of the Angels.

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So, what does this sort of recognition mean to Beckham?

"Well, I hope I'm there," said a smiling Beckham of his first All-Star ballot placement. "Hopefully, our team plays well enough and I play well enough to get the chance to be there."

Fans can cast their votes for starters up to 25 times at MLB.com and all 30 club sites using the 2010 All-Star Game MLB.com Ballot Sponsored by Sprint until July 1 at 10:59 p.m. CT.

Starting rosters will be announced during the 2010 All-Star Game Selection Show on TBS on July 4. Baseball fans around the world will then be able to select the final player on each team via the 2010 All-Star Game Final Vote Sponsored by Sprint.

And the voting doesn't end there. Fans will have the opportunity to participate in the official voting for the Ted Williams Most Valuable Player Award presented by Chevrolet at the Midsummer Classic via the 2010 All-Star Game MVP Vote Sponsored by Sprint.

The All-Star Game, to be played in Anaheim on July 13, will be televised nationally by FOX and around the world by Major League Baseball International. ESPN Radio will provide exclusive national radio play-by-play, while MLB.com will offer extensive online coverage.

In-stadium voting begins at U.S. Cellular Field on May 3 and ends on June 23, the latest for any stadium in baseball.

Joining Beckham on the ballot are Paul Konerko at first base, Alexei Ramirez at shortstop, Mark Teahen at third base, A.J. Pierzynski at catcher and Alex Rios, Juan Pierre and Carlos Quentin in the outfield. Manager Ozzie Guillen chose to start the season with a rotating designated-hitter-by-committee, but it's Andruw Jones who has emerged as the starter, and it's Jones who earned the DH nod on the ballot.

Teahen has been on the ballot before as part of the Royals, and said his brother kept a copy of the first ballot as a piece of personal memorabilia. Teahen has never been voted in as a starter, so hasn't paid extremely close attention to the past voting. He hopes to earn support during his first year with the White Sox.

"Hopefully, we get going, and I have a good first half," Teahen said. "Then I can watch the voting close."

Mark Buehrle was the team's lone All-Star representative last year in St. Louis, with Quentin and Joe Crede having been selected in 2008. Closer Bobby Jenks was the lone White Sox All-Star during the '07 season, but the White Sox had Buehrle, Jenks, Konerko, Pierzynski, Jose Contreras, Jermaine Dye and Jim Thome join Guillen and his staff for the '06 Game in Pittsburgh.

With strong fan support through online voting, the White Sox could have multiple players making this trip out West in July. According to Beckham, it's an individual goal players have from the time they are young.

"Yeah, I think so," Beckham said. "Even when you make it here, that's the goal. Besides winning, getting to the playoffs, that's the goal.

"Hopefully that will be an issue come July. But right now, I'm just worried about winning."

Scott Merkin is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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