Saturday, June 25, 2016
Ballot Stuffing That I Am Surprisingly Okay With
In years past, there have been a couple of different methods, by various growing fan bases of teams, to get as many starters for that team onto the All Star team, regardless of whether or not they deserve it that year. For St. Louis fans, this is almost routine.
In 2011, the Giants fans were responsible for most of the ballot-stuffing, as Pablo Sandoval (I believe) wound up replacing a much-deserving David Wright at third. This also was happening last season, as ALL OF MISSOURI was voting their players to starting positions, including people like Omar Infante and Jhonny Peralta who hardly even deserved them. It took tons of re-voting to get Mike Moustakas off of the starting third, and getting Josh Donaldson where he rightly belonged. It was easier for Matt Holliday, as he was injured by ASG time last year.
So, with a week left to go before voting closes, it's the right time to report on another case of ballot stuffing by unified fans. However...this time it's one I'm okay with.
Not because I like the Cubs- even though I do like the Cubs, it's not my main reasoning. No...this is much better reasoning- all four infielders that are being voted into starting positions, by all of Chicago, RIGHTFULLY DESERVE those infield spots.
Unlike years where maybe Moustakas isn't the best third baseman in baseball, or maybe David Wright deserves it over Panda, this year...it makes sense. Anthony Rizzo's the best at first. Ben Zobrist's the best at second. Kris Bryant's the best at third.
The only real stretch this year is Addison Russell at shortstop. I wouldn't have originally thought him the best shortstop in the league this year, but...then I looked at who he was up against...and I realized that there wasn't a TON of competition.
Trevor Story could be an option, but he's cooled down so much since April. Brandon Crawford's great, but he's more 'reserve infielder' material than starter material, as is Aledmys Diaz. So...really, Addison Russell, even as the Rey Ordonez of this infield arrangement, is still the best choice at shortstop for the NL. And BELIEVE ME...I tried figuring out a different arrangement. I tried troubleshooting. Corey Seager, as good as he is this season, doesn't even deserve the starting job.
I tried to find an equation in which these four guys DIDN'T make sense as the starting infield for the NL All Star team, and other than one of two options that would be good enough replacements...I still felt the all-Cubs one was the best, regardless of ballot-stuffing or anything. The All-Star game should be the best of both leagues playing each other...and it fits, in this situation.
Coming Tomorrow- His brother's heating up the NL West, so his only option is to heat up the AL West. And, as his team is a little better this year, that's marginally easier for him.