Collins finds picking ASG roster a tough task

Collins finds picking ASG roster a tough task

NEW YORK -- Terry Collins is a baseball man. He was drafted by the Pirates in 1971, and has been involved in the game as a player, coach or manager virtually ever since. He even spent a few seasons managing in China.

But this summer, the Mets manager has been presented with a unique challenge. Since New York was the National League's representative in the 2015 World Series, Collins will be the NL's manager in this year's All-Star Game presented by MasterCard. And picking the team hasn't been easy.

"It is one of the most difficult things I've ever been a part of," Collins said.

The Mets will probably end up with at least one All-Star. Center fielder Yoenis Cespedes had a big lead among NL outfielders in the most recent ballot update on June 29. After sitting in third, he passed Dexter Fowler and Bryce Harper in the voting. Cespedes ranks sixth in the NL with a .570 slugging percentage.

Right-hander Noah Syndergaard has also made a strong case to make the roster. The Mets' presumptive ace has put together a 2.41 ERA in 17 games (16 starts), and ranks fourth in the NL with a 10.96 K/9.

Jeurys Familia, who leads the Major Leagues with 28 saves, has also emerged as a likely bullpen option.

"He's got 28 saves, that's a pretty good case -- 28 for 28," Collins said. "I've looked around the league, I don't know anybody else that's got that."

Collins did acknowledge that several worthy players will be left off the team, though. The rosters will be announced Tuesday at 7 p.m. ET on ESPN.

"There are numerous guys who are going to be left off, who are deserving to be on the team," Collins said. "I was told it's not much fun. And they are correct."

Joshua Needelman is a reporter for MLB.com based in New York. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.