Originally written July 03, 2013 on Behind in the Count:
AP As July 16th draws near, the debate of who is or isn’t an All-Star engulfs the baseball world. One of the hottest points of contention right now is the legitimacy of Yasiel Puig as a potential National League All-Star. Should a ballplayer who, as of 3 July, has just 112 plate appearances have the honor of MLB All-Star bestowed up him–either as a starter or a bench player? The All-Star game is a spectacle for the fans–an opportunity to see their favorite players on the same field all at once. The rosters are a mixture of fan-favorites and those that truly deserve to be recognized based upon their first half performance. And therein lies the heart of this question–based upon the stigma of the All-Star game and those selected, does Puig deserve to be there? Depending on who’s side your on, we are at the mercy of the fans–if he’s voted in, then he ‘deserves’ to be there. If the team were voted on by an organization such as the BBWAA or by MLB coaching staffs, and Puig is voted in based upon statistical evaluation, then I’d say no. Even if he’s outplaying almost everyone right now, it doesn’t necessarily make him the better overall player. Given Puig’s limited sample size of offensive production and defensive metrics, it wouldn’t be fair to give him a spot in front of someone like Carlos Gonzalez, Andrew McCutchen or Carlos Gomez. Those players have participated in the majority of games played this year and have performed at a consistently high level for the past three-plus months. Puig is off to a start unmatched by anyone in 2013–which is an accomplishment–but without displaying it over an extended period of time, it makes it difficult to assume that he’ll continue it for another two hundred or so plate appearances. Fortunately for Puig, a lot of fans don’t see it that way. They see Puig as an exciting player who has the ability to reenergize a franchise and its fan-base. He is–for the time being–the flavor of the month (though that phrase may unfairly pigeonhole a very talented player) and that’s what fans grab onto. Exciting players like Puig inject adrenaline into the veins of a (publicly perceived) listless sport. We must remember that the All-Star game is nothing more than who the fans want to see play. Some fans use sabermetrics to make their picks, some vote only for players on their favorite team, while others vote for who they like to watch. The players who make the squad don’t always deserve to be recognized as the best at their respective division. MLB players have their opinions as well. Just ask Philadelphia Phillies’ relief pitcher Jonathan Papelbon. Now that the All-Star game has a certain meaning to it, voters should take their ballots a bit more serious because of the implications of the game. If NL fans want to have home field advantage for the World Series, they’d do well to elect Puig to the team. On my ballot, I’d choose him as an outfielder for the NL. I’d do that not because I think he’s better than the other options, but because I don’t take the game itself seriously and I want to see the guy play. So is Puig an MLB All-Star? Since the All-Star game is nothing more than a popularity contest, why not accept the most popular player in baseball right now? The post Should Yasiel Puig Be a MLB All-Star? appeared first on Bohemian Baseball.

What to watch in the NL Wild Card game

Sammy Watkins calls out EJ Manuel

Larry Donnell benches himself in fantasy, loses because of it

Josh Gordon says NFL’s drug policy is harrassment

Steve Smith: Ron Rivera hid in his office after cutting me

Rondo hoping for an opening night return from broken hand


Jon Gruden on Raiders job: 'I'm not thinking about coaching'

Tom Brady defends not congratulating Garoppolo on TD

Ohio State student who ran on field loses full scholarship

Report: Carson Palmer's nerve injury 'still lingering'

Adam Dunn to retire after 14-year MLB career

Ryan Lochte: Phelps made dumb decision, will learn from it

NL Wild Card Game Live Blog

WATCH: Mayweather shocked someone doesn’t know who he is

Who is the new face of MLB?

NHL 15 predicts the LA Kings win the Cup again

J.J. Watt buys his mom a new car for her birthday

Ranking the NFL coaches already sitting on the hot seat

WATCH: Smith tells Panthers to go home and mow his lawn

The best games on the NFL slate in Week 5

Aaron Rodgers says smoking gesture a tribute to Jay Cutler

What will the A’s look like in 2015?

Major League Baseball's 2014 All-Disappointment Team

Jeter introduces 'The Players Tribune,' 'The Voice of the Game'

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!

What to watch in the NL Wild Card game

Sammy Watkins calls out EJ Manuel

Donnell benches himself in fantasy and loses

Gordon: Drug policy is harrassment

Who is the new face of baseball?

Steve Smith blasts Panthers coach, GM

What will the A’s look like in 2015?

All-Disappointment Team in MLB

Ryan Lochte: Phelps made dumb decision

WATCH: Brett Favre in new commercial

Brady snubs rookie after TD pass

FCC: Washington nickname 'inappropriate today'

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.