Your 2016 National League All-Stars: the Chicago Cubs.
Or at least, that’s how the first round of balloting looks, as just released by MLB:
Cubs 1B Anthony Rizzo paces the NL in fan balloting for the 2016 MLB All-Star Game presented by MasterCard. pic.twitter.com/hIgb4KMwAn
— MLB Communications (@MLB_PR) June 1, 2016
The entire infield of starters, if the voting ended today, would be the same as the starting infield for the Cubs, from Anthony Rizzo to Ben Zobrist to Addison Russell to Kris Bryant. And that’s pretty cool. Moreover, Dexter Fowler would be out there in the outfield, and Jason Heyward and Jorge Soler (?) are not far behind in the outfield, either.
Rizzo leads everyone, and is blowing away the field at first base. The other Cubs leads in the infield are quite strong, as well. Pretty impressive showing by Cubs fans (and knowledgable baseball fans) in the early voting.
Miguel Montero at third in the catching voting is obviously a fan-related bump, and I can only imagine how high David Ross would be if he had been on the ballot. (I’d argue he actually should be in the top five anyway.)
To be sure, much of the Cubs’ players placements on those ballots are deserved, and you don’t get off to a start like the Cubs have had without a number of All-Star caliber players.
Still, I can’t help but notice the comparisons – others will make it, too – to the Kansas City Royals balloting from last year, which saw Royals fans (and possibly some computer “glitches”) push their players out to enormous early leads, deserved or not.
It’s still early in this process (to say nothing of the fact that it’s always been silly to select All-Stars after just two or three months of the season), so things could, and probably will, tighten up in the coming weeks. But it’s pretty fun to dream about an entire starting infield at the All-Star Game wearing Cubs caps.
(And, hey: since the All-Star Game determines home field advantage in the World Series, why shouldn’t the Cubs play a major role in the game? *winky face inserted to undo any tongue-in-cheek jinxing*)