The MLB All-Star ballot is up and all fans should absolutely vote early and often. Starlin Castro is the headliner for the Cubs this year, but Soriano is having a good enough season to merit some consideration. Carlos Marmol should be in the conversation for a bullpen slot. One name left off the ballot, though, is Darwin Barney. According to the ballot, the second baseman for the Cubs is Blake DeWitt.
With the possible exception of Castro, I can’t think of a player that has been move valuable to the Cubs so far this season than Barney. Second base was supposed to be in a state of flux this year, but Barney ended that debate by simply taking the job. The Cubs offense has performed better than a lot of us expected largely because of the two guys at the top, Castro and Barney. In addition to his hits and RBIs, Darwin Barney has produced quite a few productive outs for the Cubs and probably does not get enough respect for that part of his game. Not only does he clearly deserve to be on the ballot at second base for the Cubs, he arguably deserves some consideration for the All-Star Game itself.
As of now, Barney is fourth in batting average among all second basemen. If we throw out Jeff Baker (who is in first) because he has only appeared in six games at second base, Barney moves into third, and second in the National League behind Brandon Phillips. He’s tied for second both overall and in the National League for RBIs as a second baseman, and is eleventh in total bases. I’m not sure he deserves the starting job over Brandon Phillips, but he should absolutely still be in the conversation.
When you fill out your ballot, give some thought casting a write-in vote for Darwin Barney. Make sure any of your friends who don’t follow the Cubs take a look at what he has done before they fill out their own ballots. Barney will only get his well deserved recognition if we write him in at the bottom of the ballot. He has more than earned All-Star consideration, but he will only get it if we give it to him.
Spread the word. Let’s get this Darwin Barney write-in campaign started.