Baseball Toaster Bad Altitude
Fifth? FIFTH?
2005-06-01 16:32
by Mark T.R. Donohue

Well, a colossal miscarriage of justice is taking place in the NL All-Star voting, where the one bright spot of this miserable Rockies season is getting old-school jacked by the ignorance of the common baseball "fan." Look at these results for starting shortstop:

  1. Nomar Garciaparra, 235,899. Garciaparra is hurt, possibly out for the year, and before he went down he was hitting .157 and slugging .176. I know he has a solid career resumé, but come on. He won't be able to play, anyway.
  2. David Eckstein, 212,209. Eckstein is a good player (as I noted earlier, he's made the Cardinals' letting Edgar Renteria go look real smart), but he only has two homers on the season, his slugging is sub-.400, and his throws to first from short look like tosses from deep left.
  3. Rafael Furcal, 212,160. Strictly a rep pick. Furcal is having a terrible season, hitting .229 with 3 homers. He ranks 9th out of 12 batting-title qualified shortstops in NL in OPS.
  4. Jose Reyes, 189,929. Reyes, who began the season with a classic streak of plate appearances without walking, has an OBP of .298. That's lower than Neifi Perez, Marco Scutaro, Julio Lugo, and (Florida's) Alex Gonzalez.
  5. Clint Barmes, 183,338. Well, let's ignore our obvious bias and go right to the stats. Among qualified NL shortstops Barmes leads the league in homers with 7 (Cincinnati's Felipe Lopez has 8 but hit 2 as a second baseman). Barmes leads in RBIs. He's tied for first in runs. He's tied for third in doubles. He's second in batting average (to Cesar Izturis, and where's he in the voting?), third in OBP, first in slugging, and first in OPS by nearly 50 points. If you like defense, he's fourth in the league in range factor (and last in fielding percentage, but that's a flawed stat).

Justice must be served! Go to the ballpark, go to the website, and vote your heart out. This is probably the Rockies' first and only chance for glory on the national stage this season. Make it count. VOTE CLINT!

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