Originally posted on Awful Announcing  |  Last updated 7/11/13
With the MLB All-Star Game Final Vote campaign currently clogging your Twitter feeds today, one theme has been popping up surrounding the National League voting this week: is ESPN pushing Yasiel Puig a little too hard to win the vote? If you simply looked at ESPN's Twitter, you wouldn't get that impression. One tweet about Puig has come out since the Final Vote began, and that was today, coming in reference to the Dodgers picking up seven games in the NL West standings since the Cuban's arrival in southern California (which is an incredible run). The SportsCenter account has provided updates on Puig, but also provided updates that Freddie Freeman is leading him in the NL voting (with no updates on the AL vote) along with statistical updates on several other players. There's just one post on ESPN.com's MLB page about Puig, and it's a breakdown of the Final Vote candidates. Is that really pushing him unfairly? This afternoon on SportsCenter, there's going to be a live interview with Puig. But is that really out of the ordinary for ESPN? Also today, they're going crazy about the return of a 39-year old shortstop of a fourth place team. ESPN isn't concerned either way who wins the vote, because they're going to keep pushing Puig. I'm willing to bet that more casual fans have heard of Puig than all of the other four Final Vote contenders combined. In fact, most of the rage towards ESPN is pointed at... their opinion shows. Gee, that's a novel concept. People are apaprently getting angry that PTI spent *four seconds* shilling Puig over Freeman, or that Dan LeBatard and Papi from Highly Questionable want to see Puig in the game. Of course, both Papi and LeBatard are of Cuban descent (just like Puig!), but that is apparently insignificant when it comes to trashing ESPN. I think ESPN's Keith Law said it best in his column (Insider required) about the All-Star Game rosters and snubs: Puig in the game would represent a huge marketing opportunity for MLB. And Law's point is completely valid: MLB has been trying to grow the game internationally for years, and while Puig probably wouldn't provide a massive spike in marketability, he would definitely provide more interest than Freeman, who is known more for giving hugs out in the dugout as opposed to anything else.  ESPN isn't stumping for Puig because they want him in Flushing. They're stumping for Puig because he's far and away the biggest star of any of the ten players involved in the voting in either league, and ESPN loves their stars. The outrage shouldn't be for ESPN talking about Puig rather than Freeman, or any of the other cndidates, but for ESPN's other agendas, specifically their witch hunt of Ryan Braun based on the ever so vague anonymous sources that have been giving the same reworded updates for three months now. I've deviated from my initial point, but the fact remains: ESPN is doing nothing out of the ordinary here. When the Braves set the world on fire in April, you heard the Evan Gattis story something like 800 times. When the Pirates turned it on in May and June, you were bludgeoned over the head with talk about their consecutive season losing streak. Now, the Dodgers have caught fire, and all eyes are on Puig. It's the natural way of how the news goes, and this is really a perfect storm for ESPN. The Dodgers are at .500 and within a hair of first place in the NL West, Puig is a major reason why, and he's involved in the Final Vote. Last year, Chipper Jones was involved in the Final Vote in the midst of his last season, and after Jones was named to the team, Bryce Harper was the apple of everyone's eye for the Final Vote. There's no compelling narrative about any of the other candidates in either league... except for Puig, and that's why he's getting all of the attention. It's not a grand conspiracy, it's just the reality of the situation.
MORE FROM YARDBARKER:
Best athlete by state all time
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Rodgers dealing with sickness ahead of NFC Championship Game

Russell Westbrook responds to All-Star snub

Report: Knicks, Melo to part ways by next season

Report: Pau Gasol out up to six weeks after hand surgery

Adam Jones to serve as penalty box attendant for minor league hockey team

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Report: Paxton Lynch to be given chance to win Broncos’ job

Patriots have a magician perform tricks for players every Friday?

Indiana's OG Anunoby needs knee surgery, out for remainder of season

Tom Brady refuses to discuss Donald Trump: ‘Let’s talk about football stuff’

Report: 49ers could target Kirk Cousins in trade that includes No. 2 overall pick

Mike McCarthy: Jordy Nelson, Davante Adams may be game-time decisions

Best of Yardbarker: Roger Goodell does what we all expected him to do

Eat, Drink, Watch for Jan. 20-22, 2017: Dips, rye, football and Death Race 2050

Box Score 1/20: 37 years ago today, Carter said no to Moscow

NFC & AFC Championship preview: We love scoring

Roger Goodell is a coward, but then we knew that

TailGreater: Picking the conference champions by their signature cocktails

The 10 best sports docs available for streaming

The NFC Championship’s two most important players

Eight bold predictions for second half of NBA season

Box Score 1/19: Happy anniversary to the 'Tuck Rule' game

Clarification Please: Why college basketball needs to ditch the possession arrow

NBA hotline bling: Derrick Rose gets disconnected

MLB News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Best of Yardbarker: Roger Goodell does what we all expected him to do

Eat, Drink, Watch for Jan. 20-22, 2017: Dips, rye, football and Death Race 2050

QUIZ: Name the owners of these 50 famous NFL nicknames

NFC & AFC Championship preview: We love scoring

Roger Goodell is a coward, but then we knew that

The 10 best sports docs available for streaming

TailGreater: Picking the conference champions by their signature cocktails

The 'What's a Romo worth these days anyway?' quiz

Clarification Please: Why college basketball needs to ditch the possession arrow

NBA hotline bling: Derrick Rose gets disconnected

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker