Giancarlo Stanton was set to play in the 2012 All-Star Game, but with upcoming knee surgery, he will not only miss the game, he will also miss the next four to six weeks, according to The Miami Herald.
Replacing Stanton in the All-Star Game will be Washington Nationals phenom Bryce Harper. Harper will become the third-youngest player in All-Star Game history. The two that were younger than him were Bob Feller and Dwight Gooden.
Harper's addition to the All-Star Game is a big accomplishment for him this early in his career and it should be fun to see how he performs.
While Harper and Trout will not face off directly against each other, the fact that these two young stars will be playing against each other in an All-Star Game before either of them is 21 years old is incredibly impressive.
We will be hearing about these two for a long time. Having two youngsters like this in their first All-Star Game will add more to the debate that will certainly be had over the next few years about who will be the better big leaguer.
The All-Star Game is supposed to feature the players with the best numbers. Instead, because of the fan vote, it turns into more of a popularity contest.
Harper is quickly becoming one of the better-known names in baseball and he will help provide more star power to the All-Star Game.
Even though he is just 19, Harper has shown that he is not afraid of the media. His personality has come out in multiple ways since he as been drafted.
Harper also brings a bit of swagger to the All-Star Game. One of the most memorable moments from his minor league career came when he blew a kiss to a pitcher.
Some people hated this, while others thought that it was just Harper enjoying himself while playing the game he loves.
It should be interesting to see if Harper does anything that will draw a lot of attention to himself during the All-Star Game this season.
Earlier this season Philadelphia Phillies pitcher Cole Hamels plunked Bryce Harper with a pitch and then later admitted (h/t Associated Press, ESPN.com) that he did it on purpose to say "welcome to the big leagues."
Now, Harper and Hamels will be teammates during the 2012 MLB All-Star Game. It should be interesting to see any interactions the two have during the game.
In the few days left before the All-Star Game, during the game and after the game, people will be debating if Harper actually deserved to play. There are an overwhelming number of fans that want to see the young phenom play.
There is no denying that the All-Star Game has lost a little bit of its luster over the years. Even the high stakes of home-field advantage has not made the game much more interesting.
Harper's addition to the All-Star Game will certainly bring more attention to Kansas City this year.