With the MLB All-Star Rosters being unveiled this weekend, I thought it was time to reveal what I have done yearly for about the past five seasons: my All Star teams.
These rosters are, in my opinion, what the MLB All-Star teams should look like.
Before reading the teams below, here are a few things that did or did not go into my selection process:
- Just like the regular teams, I made sure each team had one representative.
- I did not take into account the results of the fan voting, as that’s pretty much the whole reason why I do this. I believe that All Star fan voting in every sport is terrible, as it pretty much assures each season that two or three guys in each lineup don’t deserve to start, and one of those guys probably doesn’t deserve to be in the game all together.
- However, I did leave one roster spot on each team open for the Final Man Vote, which like normal, I chose five people for.
- For the starting outfield positions, I did not differentiate which outfield position the person plays. I just simply took what I believed were the three best outfielders.
- I mainly looked at your basic statistics for both hitters (batting average, home runs, RBI, steals, OBP, SLG and OPS) and pitchers (W-L, ERA, IP, WHIP, saves and holds), but I did also take into account WAR and of course, the record of the team the players were on. The last two were looked at more closely to break ties between certain players.
- Guys who are obviously no-go’s for the game because of injury were not included (ie: Matt Kemp).
So, now that you have a good idea of what my basis was for choosing the teams, here are my ideal starting lineups (starting pitcher included):
My National League All Star Starting Lineups
1. Andrew McCutchen CF- Pirates
2. David Wright 3B- Mets
3. Joey Votto 1B- Reds
4. Ryan Braun LF- Brewers
5. Carlos Beltran DH- Cardinals
6. Carlos Gonzalez RF- Rockies
7. Carlos Ruiz C- Phillies
8. Aaron Hill 2B- Diamondbacks
9. Jed Lowrie SS- Astros
P R.A. Dickey- Mets
My American League All Star Starting Lineups
1. Mike Trout CF- Angles
2. Robinson Cano 2B- Yankees
3. Josh Hamilton RF- Rangers
4. David Ortiz DH- Red Sox
5. Paul Konerko 1B- White Sox
6. Miguel Cabrera 3B- Tigers
7. Mark Trumbo LF- Angels
8. Joe Mauer C- Twins
9. Elvis Andrus SS- Rangers
P Chris Sale- White Sox
When you look at these starting lineups, there are a few things that stand out:
– Both starting pitchers are guys who no one would have expected to be there when the season started. You could make arguments for other pitchers in both leagues, but Dickey and Sale have both been the most consistent pitchers in their leagues all season long.
– No, I did not put three Carloses in a row on purpose.
– The pool at 2B and SS are both pretty thin in the National League, and when you look at all the numbers, Hill and Lowrie are both the most deserving despite being on worse teams than other players at their position.
– Carlos Beltran is the National League DH because out of all the reserves I had for the NL, he was having by far the best season.
Speaking of the reserves, here are the position player reserves for each league:
My National League All Star Reserves
C Yadier Molina- Cardinals
1B Paul Goldschmidt- Diamondbacks
2B Jose Altuve- Astros
3B Chase Headley- Padres
SS Ian Desmond- Nationals
SS Starlin Castro- Cubs
OF Melky Cabrera- Giants
OF Giancarlo Stanton- Marlins
OF Martin Prado- Braves
OF Michael Bourn- Braves
OF Andre Ethier- Dodgers
My American League All Star Reserves
C A.J. Pierzynski- White Sox
1B Prince Fielder- Tigers
2B Ian Kinsler- Rangers
3B Adrian Beltre- Rangers
SS Asdrubal Cabrera- Indians
OF Jose Bautista- Blue Jays
OF Austin Jackson- Tigers
OF Adam Jones- Orioles
OF Josh Reddick- A’s
OF Curtis Granderson- Yankees
DH Edwin Encarnacion- Blue Jays
Here’s what stood out to me when picking the reserves:
– The National League outfielders were a very deep group, and I had to leave some good players out. A few of those guys are on the Final Man Ballot.
– Josh Reddick, Starlin Castro, and Chase Headley were all not originally included until the last step in my process, making sure each team had a representative. To make sure of that, I had to take off guys to include Reddick, Castro, and Headley. Reddick and Castro were close to making it anyways, but Headley was not really close to the next best third baseman (David Freese of the Cardinals).
Now, for the pitchers:
My National League All Star Pitchers
Matt Cain- Giants
Kyle Loshe- Cardinals
Madison Bumgarner- Giants
James McDonald- Pirates
Chris Capuano- Dodgers
Clayton Kershaw- Dodgers
Zach Greinke- Brewers
Johnny Cueto- Reds
Gio Gonzalez- Nationals
Stephen Strasburg- Nationals
Craig Kimbrel- Braves
Joel Hanrahan- Pirates
My American League All Star Pitchers
Jered Weaver- Angels
Justin Verlander- Tigers
C.J. Wilson- Angels
Jake Peavy- White Sox
David Price- Rays
Matt Harrison- Rangers
Felix Hernandez- Mariners
Jim Johnson- Orioles
Fernando Rodney- Rays
Chris Perez- Indians
Scott Downs- Angels
Jonathan Broxton- Royals
The list of pitchers shows large contrast between each league, and a few things stand out here:
– There are five relievers for the AL compared to just two for the NL. This is simply because the starting pitching pool in the AL is fairly weak when it comes to dominant pitchers, while the NL’s is very strong. Likewise, there are more dominant relievers in the AL compared to the NL.
– The only non-closer relief pitcher in the game is the Angels’ Scott Downs, a very deserving pick. Sergio Romo of the Giants and Sean Burnett and Tyler Clippard of the Nationals were also considered, but in the end, I chose to put on yet another starting pitcher.
– King Felix actually was not initially chosen. But the Mariners were one of those teams I needed to find a representative for. He took the place of Baltimore’s Jason Hammel.
For each league, 33 players have now been revealed. With one spot left, here would be my five guys for the Final Man Ballot:
My National League Final Man Ballot
2B Brandon Phillips- Reds
P Cole Hamels- Phillies
OF Dexter Fowler- Rockies
OF Matt Holliday- Cardinals
C Buster Posey- Giants
My American League Final Man Ballot
DH Adam Dunn- White Sox
OF Josh Willingham- Twins
2B Jason Kipnis- Indians
OF Nick Swisher- Yankees
DH Billy Butler- Royals
Not including the Final Man guys, here is a breakdown of All Stars per team:
- 5- Rangers, Angels
- 4- Tigers, White Sox
- 3- Nationals, Braves, Pirates, Cardinals, Giants, Dodgers
- 2- Mets, Reds, Brewers, Astros, Diamondbacks, Yankees, Orioles, Rays, Blue Jays, Indians
- 1- A’s, Mariners, Royals, Twins, Red Sox, Marlins, Phillies, Cubs, Rockies, Padres
Well, I hope you enjoyed this read, but I don’t necessarily hope that you agree. Let the discussion and debate begin!