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For a few years now, the winner of the MLB All-Star Game has been awarded homefield-advantage in the World Series. Bud Selig believes it gives the game more meaning to have such a stipulation. I disagree with that, but whatever. The game does mean something, and in recent years, it has meant something to the Philadelphia Phillies.
Had the NL won the All-Star Game, and the Phillies had homefield-advantage for the World Series, history may have been different last year. Lets face it, homefield advantage is a big deal in the playoffs. So, instead of voting Carlos Beltran (on DL all year) into the All-Star Game just because you seen his name before, or Raul Ibanez( .238, 3 HR, 18 RBIs) because he plays for the Phillies, take the time to KNOW who the deserving and best players are. After all, this game DOES mean something to OUR team, the Phillies. So, we should try to send out the best players this year to defeat the AL, and yes, "guy who has been to 3 games since 2005 and plans to vote 25 times," Barry Bonds isn't on the ballet.
Here is what I think should be the starting-lineup for the NL in the All-Star Game. Though we can't decide the lineup, we can decide who is in it. Anyway, here is who I would vote in and where I think they should bat (This is as of 5/20/2010):
CF Michael Bourn, HOU- He has the kind of speed you want at the top of the order with a good batting average(.291) to go with it. He also is a good centerfielder, with 7 assist and a .991 fielding percentage.
SS Hanley Ramirez, FLA- Despite recent allegations of a lack of hustle, you can't keep this guy out. He is batting .303 with 7 homeruns and 21 RBI's. He is the guy I would want batting 2nd. However, one could make an argument for Placido Polanco.
DH Ryan Braun, MIL- He is batting .342 with 7 homeruns and 20 RBI's. He is tied with the Cubs' Marlon Byrd for the most hits by an NL outfielder, with 52.
LF Andre Ethier, LAD- He is leading the Majors in hitting, with a .392 AVG. He also has 11 homeruns and a league-leading 38 RBI's.
RF Jayson Werth, PHL- The guy is a beast at the plate. He is batting .326 with 8 homeruns and 31 RBI's. He is also a good option for the first 3 or 4 innings of the game in rightfield.
1B Albert Pujols, STL- He is one of the best hitters in the game, and almost is always a given to start the All-Star game. This year is no different. He is batting .322 with 8 homeruns and 29 RBI's.
2B Chase Utley, PHL- No 2nd baseman is better than Chase. He is the obvious choice. He is batting .304 with 9 homeruns and 22 RBI's.
3B Casey McGehee, MIL- He is one of the best hitters in the NL, and I think he deserves to start 3rd base. He is batting .324 with 9 homeruns and 37 RBI's.
C Yadier Molina, STL- I give him the start because of his fielding ability. He has .993 fielding percentage and he has already caught 11 stealing. While he isn't the best hitter, he is one of the best catchers.
With this lineup for the first 3 or 4 innings, I believe they could do real damage to the AL, which will help to win the NL homefield-advantage in the World Series. Of course, we all hope that the Phillies will represent the National League. In a couple of days, I'll bring you my AL selections. What do you think about the NL selections? What would you change and why? Let us know in the comment section.