NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — With the exception of the two final spots being put up to a public vote, the MLB All-Star rosters are set.
And as always, they aren’t perfect.
Here are five things the decision-makers got wrong.
1. Russell undeserving
As evidenced by the fact that five Chicago Cubs were voted by the fans to start for the National League, Cubs fans were obviously very successful in stuffing the ballot box. While Anthony Rizzo, Ben Zobrist, Kris Bryant and Dexter Fowler are deserving of making the team, Addison Russell is not. His .245 batting average ranks 11th among qualifying NL shortstops, and his 11 home runs aren’t enough to offset that. Dodgers rookie Corey Seager (.304, 17 homers) deserves the start, and either St. Louis’ Aledmys Diaz (.314, 11 homers) or Colorado’s Trevor Story (.259, 19 homers) deserves the No. 2 shortstop spot. (Story could still make the team through the Final Vote.)
2. Where’s D-Rob and K-Rod?
Royals manager Ned Yost made a few curious decisions in selecting his pitching staff. Among them was leaving the White Sox’s David Robertson and Detroit’s Francisco Rodriguez off the team. The two relievers — former Yankees and Mets closers, coincidentally — are tied for second in the American League in saves with 23 each.
3. Sanchez snubbed
Yost also apparently didn’t believe Blue Jays pitcher Aaron Sanchez’s 9-1 record and 2.94 ERA were worthy enough. Oddly enough, Yost instead selected Sanchez’s Toronto teammate Marco Estrada, who has pretty much the same ERA (2.93), the exact same number of strikeouts (99) but a less impressive 5-3 record.
4. No Braun
Ryan Braun is still alive for a spot though the Final Vote, but considering his checkered past, we’d be shocked if he gets the votes. Truth be told, his numbers (.323 average, 16 homers) indicate he should be starting in this game over Bryce Harper, who is hitting just .258. But again, that would have required plenty of fans to actually vote for the onetime admitted juicer.
5. Too many DHs
Why, especially in a game being played in San Diego, a National League ballpark, does the American League need to pick two designated hitters? David Ortiz clearly deserves to be there. But Edwin Encarnacion? Sure, his 22 homers and 77 RBIs are great, but his batting average of .267 is fairly pedestrian. There are several other players — including Michael Saunders, Danny Valencia and Evan Longoria — who have put together more complete bodies of work, which includes actually playing the field.