As you know, the All-Star rosters were expanded to 33 players this year, and once again it came down to the Finale Vote to decide the 33rd player on each team. This year, fans voted a record 68.6 million times, electing Detroit Tigers third baseman Brandan Inge, and Philadelphia Phillies outfielder Shane Victorino.
While these two players certainly deserve to be All-Stars, and the Tigers and Phillies combined for an epic “Bran-Torino” campaign, there were players on the ballot from both leagues that were more deserving.
Adam Lind has done nothing short of tear the cover off the ball for the Toronto Blue Jays. He is tied for fourth in the American League with 26 doubles, tied for tenth with Inge with 19 home runs, and third in total bases with 183. Despite this, he finished last among voters. Here is how their numbers stack up.
The only area in which Inge holds an advantage is his stellar defence at third base, while Lind is stuck at DH in Toronto. While Inge’s comeback to All-Star is certainly a heartwarming story, based on the numbers, it should be Lind.
I was really surprised that my personal favourite, Pablo Sandoval, the Kung Fu Panda, was overtaken by Victorino on the last day. While you cannot really compare their numbers because they are different types of players, my choice would have been Sandoval. He is seventh in the National League with a .326 average and tenth with a .939 OPS. He has also endeared himself to fans with his, shall we say, portly physique.
I cannot complain too much about this one as Victorino deserves this opportunity as much as anyone, and we will have plenty more chances to see Sandoval in All-Star games in the future.
It should be an exciting game in St. Louis, and I cannot wait until next year when we get to complain about the starters and snubs once again.