Monday, June 29, 2015

Four more added to NPB All-Star Series by vote of Players

Ikuhiro Kiyota had quite a run and has been one of the hotter hitters for Chiba.
The players' vote for the NPB All-Star Series was released on Monday night, which is Monday morning in the United States. While several player votes overlapped with the fan vote, multiple players were selected into the 2015 NPB All-Star Series which will take place in Tokyo Dome and Hiroshima. Here is our reaction to all four players selected.

Stats are reflected on games completed through June 28.  We will display a slashline of Batting Average/OBP/SLG.

C/1B Shinnosuke Abe (Yomiuri): .260/.353/.366

One can argue that Abe got in for his name recognition of years past. He isn't displaying the same pop that he used to with only three home runs, but he still leads all Central League catchers in most offensive categories. He also has been limited, playing more than half of the games for Yomiuri. He was our vote for Central League Catcher, but it was very light knowing his role has moved to 1B on occasion.

1B Jose Lopez (DeNA): .298/.352/.513

Lopez was our vote for the 1B position knowing he has impressive pop playing in only his first season with the Baystars. With ability to hit for average and display some power with 13 home runs, we approve of this vote among the players.

OF Yuhei Takai (Yakult): .236/.293/.343 

This vote clearly had to do with name recognition among the players as Takai came off a solid 2014 season with the Swallows. He had 23 home runs last year, but this season he only has four. It feels like the players away from Yakult didn't know he is having a down season and this is a vote we disagree with. Personally, we want Ryosuke Hirata of Chunichi to make the Central League team.

OF Ikuhiro Kiyota (Chiba): .335/.405/.538

Kiyota was one of the hottest hitters in the month of May and continued to be strong through June. If it weren't for Lee Dae-Ho, he would have won the Pacific League MVP for May. With an on base percentage over .400, it's hard to argue against him being an All-Star. Our vote went to Katsuya Kakunaka, but we're understanding of Kiyota getting in.  


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