LeMahieu entered Saturday second among National League second basemen in batting average, OPS and on-base percentage. Yet the Nationals' Daniel Murphy, who leads in most categories, and the Cubs' Ben Zobrist, who was voted a starter by the strong Chicago effort, are going -- while LeMahieu will stay home, barring a late injury-replacement invitation.
But the Rockies' sub-.500, third-place status in the NL West is the problem that leads to most snubs, especially for a club outside the big markets. Home run hitters Nolan Arenado and Carlos Gonzalez, who will start the game as an injury replacement, will represent the Rockies, although the club also made arguments for LeMahieu, center fielder Charlie Blackmon, shortstop Trevor Story and pitcher Tyler Chatwood.
"When you don't win and you're not one of those top teams, you're not going to have very many guys in the All-Star Game," said LeMahieu, an All-Star in 2015. "I'm not disappointed. That's what happens. I don't take it personally.
"We have to win. That's not just for personal reasons. We play to win. When we're not getting the job done, it's disappointing. When the personal stuff comes up, you understand it a little better."
The Rockies haven't had a winning season since 2010 and weren't expected to be a contender. But LeMahieu sees an offense that can score big and an improved pitching staff, yet the team has not put them together consistently enough to make a move.
"It's really frustrating," LeMahieu said. "We're a team. It's not offense. It's not pitching. We have to be more consistent. I don't think we've played to our potential. We have a lot of good things going. The positives outweigh the negatives, but overall we need to be better."
Righty Christian Bergman, who injured his left oblique May 19, was scheduled to make his fourth injury-rehab start for Triple-A Albuquerque on Saturday. The Rockies reinstated him from the 15-day disabled list on Saturday and optioned him to Albuquerque. Rockies manager Walt Weiss said the club will decide whether to bring him back in his long-relief role or keep him in Triple-A after the break for depth purposes.
Rusin taking the next step
Lefty starter Chris Rusin, who hasn't pitched since June 8 because of left shoulder inflammation, is scheduled to throw a three-inning, 45-pitch simulated game Sunday. If all goes well, he could embark on a Minor League rehab assignment.
Outfielder Gerardo Parra, who suffered a high sprain of the left ankle on June 14, has been doing increased running, and will be tested in Atlanta after the All-Star break.
Righty Jon Gray, whose 6 1/3 innings Friday night went asunder when the bullpen couldn't hold a 2-0 lead against the Phillies, waned in the seventh before being removed. Weiss said an incident in the third inning, when Gray jammed his right foot/ankle while running the bases, played a part in his reduced effectiveness.
"I saw more effort creeping into his delivery and the ankle had something to do with it," Weiss said. "I had a talk with Jon today and just talked about the whole scenario last night. I saw more effort in the delivery. The four-pitch walk to start the inning got my attention -- especially the nature of it, a lot of big misses.
"Also, seventh inning on, when a guy pitched as well as Jon did, you don't want to put him in position to take a loss. With the go-ahead run coming to the plate, I felt really good about [Jake] McGee in that situation. It didn't work out."