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All-Star Selection Sunday: Justin Upton In, Ian Kennedy Makes Final Man Vote

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The MLB All-Star Game.  A midsummer tradition since 1933, it's been MLB's showcase of its best talent.  Although it seems like nearly every notable player managed to make a World Series, that's really not the case.  The All-Star Game has been the platform for the game's best players to show their worth, and even if the voting process is sometimes less than legitimate, ever player wants to be known as an All-Star.

The Diamondbacks can't expect to have many member part of the All-Star game.  The team might be turning heads for its play, but even Arizona's best players will get ignored in favor of other, established players.  They will need to win a World Series again to have a chance at getting in a large gaggle of players: in 2002 the Diamondbacks had a whopping 6 players in the ASG, the most in the franchise's short history.

There seems to be a general consensus here that in a fair world the following Diamondbacks would be going to the 2011 All-Star Game: Justin Upton, Stephen Drew, Miguel Montero, Ian Kennedy.  Daniel Hudson, JJ Putz, and Ryan Roberts could also have an argument, but I'd think they all would be considerably less likely for various reason.  

So which of our Diamondbacks actually made the Midsummer Classic?

Spoiler alert, only one.

Now a breakdown of the positions:

National League

Catcher

First Base

Second Base

  • Rickie Weeks, Brewers (S)
  • Brandon Phillips, Reds

Third Base

  • Placido Polanco, Phillies (S)
  • Clipper Jones, Braves

Shortstop

Outfield

  • Ryan Braun, Brewers (S)
  • Lance Berkman, Cardinals (S)
  • Matt Kemp (S)
  • Justin Upton, Diamondbacks
  • Jay Bruce, Reds
  • Hunter Pence, Astros
  • Carlos Beltran, Mets
  • Matt Holliday, Cardinals

Pitchers

  • Jonny Venters, Braves
  • Clayton Kershaw, Dodgers
  • Cole Hamels, Phillies
  • Jair Jurrjens, Braves
  • Joel Hanrahan, Pirates
  • Heath Bell, Padres
  • Matt Cain, Giants
  • Roy Halladay, Phillies
  • Tim Lincecum, Giants
  • Brian Wilson, Giants
  • Ryan Vogelsong, Giants
  • Cliff Lee, Phillies
  • Tyler Clippard, Nationals

Designated Hitter

NL Note: The Padres haven't had a starter since 1999 with Tony Gwynn.

American League

Catcher

  • Alex Avila, Tigers (S)
  • Matt Wieters, Orioles
  • Russell Martin, Yankee

First Base

  • Adrian Gonzalez, Red Sox (S)
  • Miguel Cabrera, Tigers

Second Base

  • Robinson Cano, Yankees (S)
  • Jacoby Ellsbury, Red Sox
  • Howie Kendrick, Angels

Third Base

  • Alex Rodriguez, Yankees (S)
  • Adrian Beltre, Rangers
  • Michael Young, Rangers

Shortstop

  • Derek Jeter, Yankees (S)
  • Asdrubal Cabrera, Indians

Outfield

  • Jose Bautista, Blue Jays (S)
  • Curtis Granderson, Yankees (S)
  • Josh Hamilton, Rangers (S)
  • Carlos Quentin, White Sox
  • Michael Cuddyer, Twins
  • Matt Joyce, Rays

Designated Hitter

  • David Ortiz, Red Sox (S)

Pitchers

  • Chris Perez, Indians 
  • Jose Valverde, Tigers
  • Aaron Crow, Royals
  • Josh Beckett, Red Sox
  • Mariano Rivera, Yankees
  • Gio Gonzalez, Athletics
  • Felix Hernandez, Mariners
  • Justin Verlander, Tigers
  • Brandon League, Mariners
  • David Price, Rays
  • James Shields, Rays
  • Jered Weaver, Angels
  • CJ Wilson, Rangers

AL Note: White Sox have the longest drought without a starter (1996 with Frank Thomas).

Some Analysis:

The AL starting team was about what people would expect: heavy on Red Sox and Yankees, with a smattering of representatives from other teams.  I'm pleasantly surprised Avila won a starting spot for catcher, so good job to the fans for voting for this deserving player.  The reserves are heavy on Rays and Rangers, which makes sense given the talent level of those two clubs.  I'm surprised to see CC "Captain Cheeseburger" Sabathia not make it.

No surprise NL manager Bruce Bochy loaded up on Giants for pitchers, who was proud to biased toward his own team in making selections.  Phillies, Reds, and Cardinals helped fill out the roster, which isn't much of a surprise.

Injuries played a part in the rosters, as big names like Albert Pujols and Joe Mauer were left off.  The rosters will change, of course, as some players will be brought in as injury replacements and some starting pitchers will be replaced if they start on Sunday.  There also is the final vote on the last 2 players.

So there you have it.  The AL runs out the Soxkees, and the NL has a rag team of rebels.  I'm disappointed that only Upton was able to make the squad, but not really surprised.  

EDIT: Ian Kennedy is on the NL Final Vote selection, so we need to make sure we vote for him.  The TBS guys were pretty high on him during the show, so hopefully that'll help his chances.

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