Yasiel Puig might wind up in a National League uniform at the 2013 All-Star Game next week, but not because the fans voted him in.
Atlanta Braves first baseman Freddie Freeman won the online “Final Vote” Thursday over the popular runner-up Puig, earning an automatic spot on the NL roster. The All-Star Game is next Tuesday at Citi Field in New York.
Freeman was the leading vote-getter among the five National League “Final Vote” candidates after 24 hours of voting, and still led Puig Thursday morning.
Puig is hitting .394/.428/.634 with eight home runs and 19 RBIs in his first 35 games. He was named the National League Player of the Month and Rookie of the Month in June. However, he was not listed on the All-Star ballot and not among the reserves chosen by National League manager Bruce Bochy. That left the “Final Vote” — an online ballot conducted on MLB.com (and Thursday, on Twitter) — as Puig’s last chance to go to Citi Field.
Unless, that is, he is chosen as an injury replacement, which is not entirely unlikely. A year ago, four of the five “Final Vote” candidates played in the game. St. Louis Cardinals third baseman David Freese won the online vote, while Chipper Jones, Michael Bourn and Bryce Harper became injury replacements.