Give it to Royals' Broxton
As much as I like the work of the Rangers' Yu Darvish and the Orioles' Jason Hammel, let's give this one to the home team. I'd put Royals closer Jonathan Broxton on the team with the game being played in Kansas City this year.
It's not like you're adding a stiff. Broxton has 20 saves in 23 opportunities and a 2.05 ERA. Right now, designated hitter Billy Butler is the Royals' only representative. The Royals usually get just one because they are a small-market team and they haven't won in years. It just makes sense to give them a second All-Star. But this is MLB, so don't expect sense to have anything to do with it.
Wouldn't it be great if Broxton came in to save the game with the fans in Kansas City going bonkers? Vote Broxton.
Peavy deserves it
Jake Peavy should be an All-Star. I'd also love to see Yu Darvish in the All-Star Game. He has been everything the Rangers hoped he would be.
Ideally, Darvish and Peavy could have gone, but Ron Washington engineered the choices to almost guarantee that he'd get two of his starters (Matt Harrison and Darvish) onto the team.
In terms of the most telling stats, like ERA and WHIP, Peavy has been better than either Darvish or Harrison. He's getting a bad deal going head-to-head with Darvish, who will get tremendous support from online voters in Japan.
If not for a recent lack of run support and two blown saves, Peavy would have been named to the team Sunday. He should have been, anyway.
Darvish making impact
When voting for the final spot on both the American and National League rosters, fans must take two important factors into account.
First, the choice should be based upon what each of the final five players have done in the first half of the season to help their own teams push toward a second-half pennant chase.
Second, consider the unique traits that make baseball's midsummer classic special: the mixing of tradition and innovation, the combination of up-and-comers and aging stars.
Taking both factors into account, Yu Darvish deserves the AL nod. The rookie has more wins and strikeouts than any of his final five competitors, and his team has a commanding division lead.
See what Darvish can do
Los Angeles Times
For the sake of bringing more attention to the game, I'd select Texas starting pitcher Yu Darvish with my Final Vote.
Darvish has a 10-5 record with a 3.59 earned-run average in what's effectively his rookie MLB season after starring in the Japanese League. The right-hander has helped the Rangers maintain a first-half chokehold on first place in the AL West, with 10 or more strikeouts in three of his four most recent starts.
Jonathan Broxton struggled with his previous All-Star chance. Ernesto Frieri hasn't been with the Angels all season. Jake Peavy has been to two All-Star games. And Jason Hammel just doesn't bring the same buzz to the game.
Let's see what Darvish can do.