It’s time for the Major League Baseball game and every year there is debate about who to vote for. So here is how I voted on the National League All-Star ballot and why. I also added which position players I would choose as reserves as well.
Catcher: Russell Martin, Los Angeles Dodgers
For a while Paul Lo Duca was leading the All Star voting at the catcher position in the National League. Even as a New York Mets fan I have to say thank goodness Russell Martin has taken the lead. There is no other choice. Russell Martin leads all catchers in runs, he leads all National League catchers in RBI and has even swiped thirteen bases
First Base: Prince Fielder, Milwaukee Brewers
Albert Pujols has come on since an early slump but for now Prince Fielder is the MVP in the National League. Prince Fielder leads the National League in homeruns and RBI and is the biggest reason the Milwaukee Brewers have a seven and a half game lead on the rest of the division.
Second Base: Chase Utley, Philadelphia Phillies
Brandon Phillips of the Cincinnati Reds and Dan Uggla of the Florida Marlins are having nice seasons but Chase Utley is still the top dog at second base. Chase Utley leads Brandon Phillips by twenty RBI and Uggla by thirteen. Brandon Phillips steals more bases and Dan Uggla scores more runs but the most glaring difference is Chase Utley’s .322 batting average compared to Phillips’ .277 and Uggla’s .259.
Third Base: David Wright, New York Mets
I’m sure some people will say that Miguel Cabrera should be starting in the All-Star game and I don’t disagree with them. I’ll admit this is the one spot on my ballot where I chose my favorite player over the player that should probably be there. Although David Wright isn’t a bad choice, he only has four less runs, two less doubles and four less homeruns. Miguel Cabrera does have thirteen more RBI but David Wright has sixteen more stolen bases and is a perfect sixteen for sixteen in his stolen base attempts.
Shortstop: Jose Reyes, New York Mets
I wrote an article earlier this year about how tough it is to pick a shortstop this year. J. J. Hardy has cooled down, which has made it a little bit easier, but I’m sure there are still people that can make arguments for Hanley Ramirez, Jimmy Rollins, Edgar Renteria and J. J. Hardy. Jose Reyes is still just an amazing player though. Reyes is currently behind Ramirez and Rollins in runs but part of that can be attributed to the offenses behind them. Jose Reyes is having his best hitting season, is running away with the stolen base crown and is just the most exciting player in baseball. The All-Star game needs Jose Reyes.
Outfield: Matt Holliday, Colorado Rockies
I also wrote an article about Matt Holliday already. Matt Holliday is hands-down the best outfielder in the National League right now. Holliday is sixteen points ahead of the next outfielder in batting average and that is largely because Hunter Pence has one hundred less at-bats. The next closest batter who is has played the entire season is Eric Byrnes with a batting average forty-seven points lower. Matt Holliday also leads all National League outfielders in hits and RBI and is fifth in homeruns.
Outfield: Ken Griffey Jr., Cincinnati Reds
Okay so maybe if you’re weighing the players completely on their numbers then maybe Ken Griffey Jr. comes up a little bit short but I think the combination of his resurgence plus the fact that he’s a big star should land him in the All-Star game. After all the allegations against this generation’s sluggers like Sammy Sosa, Mark McGwire and Barry Bonds it would be nice to see Ken Griffey Jr., who seems to have never cut any corners, get some of his attention back.
Outfield: Eric Byrnes, Arizona Diamondbacks
It’s tough to choose the last outfield spot between Eric Byrnes and Adam Dunn. Adam Dunn obviously has great power numbers but Byrnes has a solid twelve homeruns and forty RBI. Byrnes also bats forty-five points higher, steals more bases and strikes out less. Plus Cincinnati already has a player in the starting lineup so I try to spread the wealth as much as possible.
Reserves: C Brian McCann (Atlanta Braves), 1B Albert Pujols (St. Louis Cardinals), 1B Adrian Gonzalez (San Diego Padres), 2B Dan Uggla (Florida Marlins), 3B Miguel Cabrera (Florida Marlins), 3B Aramis Ramirez (Chicago Cubs), 3B Ryan Zimmerman (Washington Naitonals), SS Jimmy Rollins (Phliadelphia Phillies), SS Edgar Renteria (Atlanta Braves), OF Barry Bonds (San Francisco Giants), OF Adam Dunn (Cincinnati Reds), OF Carlos Lee (Houston Astros)
I believe that covers every team except the Pittsburgh Pirates but I would have either Tom Gorzelanny or Ian Snell make it as a pitcher.