MLB All-Star Voting 2016: Predicting Biggest Snubs for Summer Showcase

Steve Silverman@@profootballboyFeatured ColumnistJune 27, 2016

Wilson Ramos is having a big year for the Nationals.
Wilson Ramos is having a big year for the Nationals.Associated Press

Yadier Molina has established a stellar reputation throughout his 13 years with the St. Louis Cardinals as one of the best defensive catchers in the game's history.

When it comes to his prowess behind the plate at blocking potential wild pitches, framing pitches over the outside or the inside corner and throwing out potential base stealers, Molina belongs in the same class as Johnny Bench and Ivan "Pudge" Rodriguez.

He has also turned himself into a serviceable hitter. Molina exceeded the .300 mark in batting average for three straight years beginning in 2011, and he is a tough two-strike hitter who is not afraid of the big moment.

With his track record, it's not a surprise Molina is the leading vote-getter among National League catchers for the Senior Circuit's All-Star team. He leads Buster Posey of the San Francisco Giants by slightly more than 75,000 votes as of MLB Communications' last report.

The All-Star Game is at San Diego's Petco Park on July 12.

However, neither Molina nor Posey should be leading at the position. That honor should be going to Wilson Ramos of the Washington Nationals, who is having a stellar year with the bat and is in third place.

Ramos is hitting a robust .342 with 12 home runs and 41 RBI, while Molina is hitting .261 with a paltry one home run and 25 RBI. Posey is having a fine year with a .285 average along with eight homers and 36 RBI, but he has not been as productive as Ramos.

It looks like Ramos could be one of the biggest snubs in this year's vote for major league All-Stars.

Jeff Passan @JeffPassan

Pretty amazing: Mike Trout and Josh Donaldson have been just about the exact same player this year (via @fangraphs). https://t.co/Tjzzp9dTch

On the American League side, Toronto Blue Jays third baseman Josh Donaldson may have a reason to throw up his hands at the end of voting and ask what's going on.

Donaldson, the AL Most Valuable Player last year, has belted 17 home runs and knocked in 47 runs to go with his .288 average. Despite those figures, he is more than 500,000 votes behind Manny Machado of the Baltimore Orioles at third base.

Now, Machado is having an excellent year, as he is batting .325 with 18 home runs and 44 RBI. But here's the problem: The slick-fielding Machado is playing shortstop for the Orioles, yet he is still receiving votes as a third baseman.

That's like winning the election for mayor of Cleveland when the candidate hangs his hat in Chicago. It's just not right.

Carlos Gonzalez
Carlos GonzalezAlan Diaz/Associated Press

Carlos Gonzalez of the Colorado Rockies also has room to complain with the All-Star Game slightly more than two weeks away. The right fielder is hitting .317 with 16 home runs and 43 RBI to this point in the season, but he is just seventh in NL voting.

He trails Dexter Fowler (.290, seven homers, 28 RBI) of the Chicago Cubs, Bryce Harper (.249, 15 HR, 43 RBI) of the Washington Nationals and Yoenis Cespedes (.287, 18 HR, 45 RBI) of the New York Mets. Gonzalez is clearly having a more productive season than Fowler or Harper, although Cespedes is deserving of his position.

Nolan Arenado of the Rockies may have a slight complaint over his second-place status to Kris Bryant of the Chicago Cubs at third base, but it would have to be tempered. Arenado has the lead in home runs (21 to 18) and RBI (63 to 51), but the Cubs' sensational season helps Bryant make his case.

Still, Arenado is one of the best fielding third basemen in the game, and he is obviously a terrific baseball player.

The baseball voting public is getting it right for the most part. But if Ramos, Gonzalez and Donaldson aren't in the starting lineups, something is not right.

While it's almost impossible not to see them named to the All-Star team when MLB announces the final rosters, they deserve to start.

All stats courtesy of Baseball-Reference.com as of June 27.


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