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Several Braves make a strong All-Star case

Rewind back to the dismay of the Braves' nine-game losing streak and you would've been hard-pressed to sell the notion that Atlanta deserved more than the obligatory single All-Star berth. Since that time, the team jelled, the wins came and the recognition should be next. Rolling into the Midsummer Classic the first place boys from Atlanta could, and should have at least two representatives and could find themselves with as many as four.

Deserves to be there

Martin Prado

Prado has grown up as a baseball player right before our eyes, he's transformed from that "super utility" guy, to a true force at the top of the lineup. He's currently leading the league in hitting with a robust .334 batting average. He's been the Braves MVP this season and hasn't shown any signs of slowing down.

Deserves to be there

Tim Hudson

Hudson came into the season with questions surrounding his rebuilt arm, but almost midway through the season and he's maybe the only Atlanta starter that has no questions going forward. He's 7-3 with a 2.54 ERA.

Don't be surprised

Jason Heyward

Not long ago, Heyward was an All-Star lock, but a thumb injury led to a slide in the month leading up to the All-Star game, he hasn't been able to drive the ball and is striking out with much greater frequency. There's still a chance he makes the team, but the numbers don't back it up anymore and quite frankly it would be in everyone's best interest if he took the time off to rest his thumb.

Don't be surprised

Billy Wagner

Wagner doesn't lead the league in saves, he's not even in the top five, but he's been every bit as dominant as any other reliever in baseball. In just over 30 innings he's struck out a ridiculous 46 batters, not to mention he just recently recorded his 400th save, which could provided the momentum needed for an All-Star berth.