Last weekend, Major League Baseball announced the latest leaders in the race to make the starting lineup of the All Star Game. Just like it is every season, this popularity contest is calling for some players to start the game when they certainly haven’t earned the role with their play. What two players that are currently in the starting lineup of the All Star Game don’t belong
Justin Upton, Atlanta Braves
As a fan of the Braves, you would think that I would be all for Upton’s selection to the game. In fact, considering he is leading all National League outfielders, you’d think I would be ecstatic. His performance in April earned him a lot of votes and had many calling for the league to officially hand over the MVP award already. A lot has changed since April. He has just three home runs since the calendar changed to May and his average has dropped nearly 50 points to .254.
Instead of Upton, one player worth getting the starting nod would be from a divisional rival to the Braves, Dominic Brown. Brown is finally living up to the hype and has overproduced for this under producing team. He is hitting .281 with 19 home runs and 48 RBIs and earns a spot in the starting lineup next month.
Torii Hunter, Detroit Tigers
Hunter is one of those players that just doesn’t seem to see his play decline too much. At 37-years-old, the outfielder is currently in the starting lineup of the All Star Game. His numbers are stellar (.296, 72 hits, 24 RBIs), but they don’t warrant a starting spot ahead of other talented American League outfielders.
In place of Hunter, I would take another AL Central outfielder. Alex Gordon from the Kansas City Royals deserves it just as much as Hunter, if not more. He is hitting .299 with 6 home runs, 32 RBIs and 37 runs. The Royals are flirting with .500 because of Gordon and other young Kansas City stars and it could only be a matter of time before they are doing more than just flirting.