Indians’ Michael Brantley deserves more All-Star votes

Cleveland Indians outfielder Michael Brantley is getting short-changed in the early voting for the 2014 MLB All-Star Game.

Tony Dejak/AP

MLB released its initial American League All-Star balloting numbers Monday and the early results are not going in the Indians’ favor. None of the Indians’ position players registered in the top five (or top 15 for the outfield), which the league makes public.

The most glaring omission is Indians outfielder Michael Brantley, who is very much deserving of a spot somewhere among those top 15 outfield vote getters, if not in the top three who will start the game in Minnesota.

Let’s look at the numbers…Brantley is (as of Tuesday):

– Ninth in all of the American League and third among AL outfielders in batting average

– Fourth best among AL outfielders with nine home runs and 12th for the whole league

– Sixth in the AL with 39 RBI and second only to Nelson Cruz among AL outfielders

– 11th in the AL, fourth among AL outfielders in on-base percentage

– Fifth in hits among AL outfielders and 10th among all position players in the league

Brantley also exhibits exemplary plate presence with as many walks as strikeouts (19). That’s a stark difference from the American League’s top vote getter Mike Trout, whose 58 strikeouts are tied for most in the league.

Carlos Beltran, hitting .234 on the season, and Josh Hamilton, who’s been out since early April, have more votes right now than Brantley. That’s just not right.

You can help out Dr. Smooth’s cause by going to MLB.com and voting or filling out a ballot at the ballpark.