Most people figured MLB's All-Star "Final Vote" — in which fans choose the final member of each team from five finalists — would clear the path for rookie phenom Yasiel Puig to make the All-Star Game in the least controversial way possible.
Not so fast.
In the first tally of results since the "Final Vote" participants were announced, Puig is actually second to Atlanta Braves first baseman Freddie Freeman. More than 16 million votes have been cast thus far, but tens of millions more are expected, says MLB, so nothing is decided yet. In the American League, where Toronto Blue Jays relief pitcher Steve Delabar leads, the entire field is separated by less than 600,000 votes.
While Puigmania is certainly taking baseball by storm, you can't count out those diehard Braves fans. Freeman has played in 75 games for Atlanta, with 325 plate appearances. Puig, of course, is no where near that — 32 games with 135 PAs. Here are their respective stat lines:
Freeman: .306/.382/.462, 46 R, 88 H, 9 HR, 56 RBIs.
Puig: 409/.437/.677, 25 R, 52 H, 8 HR, 19 RBIs.
The "Final Vote" contest runs until 4 p.m. ET Thursday. Right now, fans can vote at MLB.com or via text message (text "VOTE" to 89269). On Thursday, fans can vote via Twitter from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. ET by tweeting each player's designated hashtag. Here are the current standings, plus the hashtag for each player:
1. Steve Delabar (TOR) - #RaiseTheBar (A2)
2. Koji Uehara (BOS) - #HighFiveCiti (A5)
3. David Robertson (NYY) - #HighSocksForVotes (A3)
4. Joaquin Benoit (DET) - #BackBenoit (A1)
5. Tanner Scheppers (TEX) - #TakeTanner (A4)
1. Freddie Freeman (ATL) - #Vote Freddie (N2)
2. Yasiel Puig (LAD) - #VotePuig (N5)
3. Hunter Pence (SF) - #VotePence (N4)
4. Ian Desmond (WSH) - #DesiIn13 (N1)
5. Adrian Gonzalez (LAD) - #VoteTitan (N3)
Baseball video from Yahoo! Sports: