The Case For Joey Votto: Why He Deserves To Be a 2018 MLB All-Star

Joey Votto is undoubtedly one of the best first basemen the MLB has seen since his debut in 2007. Over the course of his career, Votto has an amazing .313 batting average, over 260 home runs, over 800 RBI, and an on-base percentage of .428, the highest career mark for any active player. But, over the course of his career, he has been oddly absent from the Mid-Summer Classic, the MLB All-Star Game. He’s only appeared in the ASG 5 times over the course of his career, only appearing in one since 2014.

So far, this season, Votto is batting .307 with 8 HR and 42 RBI. Granted, his power numbers aren’t as high as you’d like them to be, but his production is still quite good, certainly enough to warrant an ASG selection. Even with his admittedly scant 8 HR, he is still 7th in the NL in OPS, posting a mark of .905. He is also 10th in batting average, 1st in walks, and 1st in OBP. He is also 4th in WAR, and the only first baseman ahead of him is Freddie Freeman (3.3).

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Joey Votto is near the top of the list of NL position player WAR leaders

I will admit, the amount of great 1B in the NL is pretty staggering. Freddie Freeman has been one of the best players in all of baseball this season, and he definitely deserves an ASG selection (and maybe an MVP by season’s end). Paul Goldschmidt, who started the season cold as ice, has gotten his average up to .264 with 17 HR and 41 RBI. Brandon Belt is batting .302 with 12 HR and 35 RBI, in addition to an impressive .393 OBP. Jose Martinez has a great average and has the fourth most RBI of any NL 1B.

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Unfortunately for Votto, there are a number of great NL first-basemen. Freeman, Goldschmidt, Votto, Martinez, and Belt are the top 5 ASG contenders, though (IMO).

The ASG usually has 2-3 players from each position on each roster. For the NL first basemen, Freddie Freeman is definitely a lock. Who are the other two? Well, I’d have to rule out Goldschmidt due to his low batting average, and Jose Martinez due to his low WAR (0.5). So, the three I’d go with are Freeman, Votto, and Belt.

So, Joey Votto deserves to see his number of career ASG appearances go up to 6 this July. His numbers are just too good to ignore: a .307 BA (10th in NL), a .438 OBP (1st in NL, 2nd in all of MLB), and a .905 OPS (7th in NL). His WAR is the second-highest of any NL 1B, and his production is good even with the lower number of HR. So, to the NL coaches/managers who vote for reserve all-star selections: do this man justice and select him for the All-Star Game. He’s a truly elite hitter who deserves more recognition.

Thank you all so much for reading. Disagree with me? Let me know in the comments, and make sure you check out all the other articles here on the site, as well as our weekly playlist. If you, like me, want to see Votto at the ASG, vote here! See you all next time.

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