Ten players from the Central League-leading Hanshin Tigers were voted onto the CL All-Star team via a fan ballot, Nippon Professional Baseball announced Wednesday.
Tigers center fielder and leadoff man Koji Chikamoto received an NPB-high 769,587 votes. SoftBank Hawks outfielder Yuki Yanagita was selected as designated hitter on a Pacific League-high 725,834 ballots.
This marks the ninth time the dynamic slugger has been named to an All-Star team, the most of any of the 23 players selected through this year's fan ballot.
Fans are allowed to vote for eight position players, a starting pitcher, middle reliever and closer in each league, as well as a designated hitter in the PL.
In the closest vote, Lotte Marines fireballer Roki Sasaki was the fans' selection for PL starting pitcher with 350,561 votes, just 3,088 more than Orix Buffaloes ace Yoshinobu Yamamoto.
The next step in the selection process will be Friday when the players' vote is announced. Players also vote for position players but for only one pitcher in each league. Every player winning the player vote, but not the fan vote, will be added to the team.
This year's All-Star games will be played on July 19 at Vantelin Dome Nagoya and July 20 at Hiroshima's Mazda Stadium.