2011 MLB All-Star Game: Does Fan Voting Stack Up with Raw Statistics?

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2011 MLB All-Star Game: Does Fan Voting Stack Up with Raw Statistics?
Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

Earlier today, Major League Baseball announced the results of this year’s All-Star fan balloting, revealing the starting offensive lineups for the Midsummer Classic in Phoenix. 

Every year, the same debate emerges: should the fans be given the opportunity to elect the starters, especially now that the outcome of the game has meaning?  Baseball purists argue that fan voting focuses on popularity at the expense of merit, while most fans want to see their favorite players, who mostly hail from major markets. 

While the debate won’t be settled anytime soon, we can evaluate just how wide the separation is between the two camps.  The fan results have been tallied, and their choices have been contrasted with the Runs Created Sabermetric (as of June 30) across all eight defensive positions for both leagues.

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