When the 2008 baseball season began, many fans and analysts had the St. Louis Cardinals penciled for another below par finish for the 2006 World Series Champions.
Two years removed from World Series Champions, the Cardinals were injury rittled once more and with no proven outfielders and only one reliable starter it looked to be a long season.
As the season began to take form, the fans began to see their Redbirds fighting for first base and it was not only because of superstar Albert Pujols and World Series hero Adam Wainwright.
The team was being led by surprise starter Todd Wellemeyer and a power hitting outfielder by the name of Ryan Ludwick. As June begins and heads into July and toward the final All-Star Game at "The Stadium" it marks the question who is deserving of being voted into the starting lineup.
As of June 7, Ludwick is hitting .306 with 13 home runs, 15 doubles, and 43 RBI, which is only nine short of last year. After such an amazing start to the season Ludwick is hoping to be voted into the All-Star game as a much deserving starter but trails fan favorites Alfonso Soriano, Kosuke Fukudome, and Ken Griffey Jr.
All of these outfielders have fans from every team and in Fukudome's case other countries all voting for them. Ludwick is a relatively unknown figure to the rest of baseball and hopes to make his mark on the rest of June and see himself rewarded with an All-Star game appearance.
The other Cardinal who is hoping to be selected to the All-Star Game is starting pitcher Todd Wellemeyer. Wellemeyer was picked up off of waivers a year ago by the Cardinals and has evolved into a key front of the rotation pitcher. He is currently 7-1 with a 2.93 ERA with 62 strikeouts in 80 innings.
Such a start is well deserving of an All-Star appearance and the only question is will the manager select the fan favorites of Tom Glavine and Jake Peavy who are not having as good of a year or will Wellemeyer get a chance to be noticed?
This brings up the question asked every year, are the fans the best judge of who should be the starters and to be honest, or the managers much better?