Joyce made national headlines when he missed a call at first base that cost Detroit Tigers pitcher Armando Galarraga a perfect game on June 2. After seeing a replay, the 22-year veteran acknowledged he blew the call and apologized to Galarraga.
ESPN said Sunday that 50 active players from each league were asked confidentially within the past week to select the three best umpires in baseball. Joyce was named on 53 percent of the surveys, topping Tim McClelland (34 percent).
CB Bucknor was voted the game's worst ump.
Also, 86 percent of players agreed that commissioner Bud Selig should not have overturned Joyce's call and awarded Galarraga the 21st perfect game in big league history.
The issue of instant replay also was addressed, and 77 percent said there should be no replay on base calls.