It’s no secret that there’s a clear divide between certain fans voting for their favorite players and other fans voting for the players they actually feel deserve to be at the All-Star Game.
People really saw this come to fruition two years ago when the Kansas City Royals fans tried voting in their entire starting lineup to start the All-Star Game in Cincinnati. Then last year, the same thing happened with Cubs fans. Even as a die-hard Atlanta Braves fan, I’m not crazy enough to do that.
The Deserving All-Star Representatives
The Braves could very well be making a case for three players being selected as All-Stars if not for the injury Freddie Freeman suffered. However, he was flying under the radar despite the MVP caliber season he was having before his injury.
However, there are still a couple of other deserving players who could see themselves representing the Braves in Miami for this year’s Midsummer Classic.
First off, there’s Matt Kemp, who’s having a torrid start to the season, despite missing time with hamstring issues.
While his 11 home runs aren’t as gaudy as other National League outfielders, he still ranks 4th in hits, 3rd in batting average, and 6th in OPS among outfielders.
Not to sound biased, but there’s no reason Jason Heyward and Ben Zobrist should have more votes than him. Even if Kemp doesn’t leapfrog both of them and earn one of the starting outfield spots, he should definitely still be there as a reserve. Fans clamor for the offense in the All-Star Game, not defense.
Another deserving player to represent the Braves is Ender Inciarte. Fresh off a Gold Glove last year, we Braves fans know just how great he is in center field. But it’s his offensive performance this year that makes him so deserving.
Inciarte ranks 4th in runs, 2nd in hits, and 6th in batting average so far this season amongst National League outfielders. In addition, he’s already gone 5-5 twice this season and has tied his career high in home runs just two and a half months in.
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The All-Star Game is still roughly a month away. If Ender continues to hit this well, then there’s no reason he shouldn’t be selected as a reserve. He does what a leadoff man should do: get on base and score runs.
I realize Atlanta isn’t contending for a playoff spot, and therefore doesn’t garner the attention that some of the other teams do, but c’mon now.
Put the players with All-Star like numbers there.