All-Star Rosters

MVNis the first site to announce the All-Star rosters, and I’d like to congratulate Evan Brunell and David Cohen on doing a great job obtaining them. I suspect this will mean a lot more traffic for the great sites on MVN. Anyways, I thought I’d take a look at the selections:
American League
C- Jason Varitek The obviously correct pick. Varitek has 48 runs created, 8 more than Jorge Posada and 7.5 RC/27, a run-in-a-half better than Posada. I-Rod is backing Tek up, and is a solid pick though Posada would have been a better choice.
1B- Mark Teixeira Again, the obvious choice. Teixeira has 62 RC, 14 more than the next guy (Raul Ibanez. Ibanez?) and at 7 RC/27 is way ahead of the competition. He’ll be backed up by Paul Konerko and Mike Sweeney. Konerko is a solid choice (3rd in RC and RC/27), but Sweeney is baffling. I know that Kansas City needs a representative, but what about Andy Sisco (41 IP, 2.63 ERA)? Sweeney isn’t the worst choice, but Ibanez was simply more deserving.
2B- Brian Roberts After years of tantalizing the Orioles with his potential, Roberts has come through in a big way this season. He’s head-and-shoulders above the competition, with 72 RC and 10 RC/27. When the Orioles decided to trade Jerry Hairston and keep Roberts, I thought it was a questionable decision. No questions anymore. Roberts has been hitting the stuffing out of the ball. Alfonso Soriano is a good choice to back him up (53 RC, 6 RC/27). Most years, he’d be starting.
3B- Alex Rodriguez Another no-brainer. After struggling a little last year (though how many players can call an .887 OPS “struggling”?), A-Rod had been hitting the stuffing out of the ball. With 70 RC and 8.8 RC/27 and great defense at third base, Rodriguez is a legitimate MVP candidate. His .319 batting average is A-Rod’s highest since 1996. He also just passed the 400 HR mark, and is still only 29. Backing up A-Rod are Shea Hillenbrand and Melvin Mora. Mora is a solid selection (49 RC, 6.2 RC/27), and is probably the third-best third baseman in the AL. Hillenbrand’s selection, on the other hand, confounds me. Brandon Inge, Hank Blalock, and Eric Chavez have all hit better and Hillenbrand is a horrid defender. Inge is much more deserving and selecting him would have allowed Posada to back up Varitek instead of I-Rod.
SS- Miguel Tejada While he hasn’t been quite as good as he was last year, Tejada is still the premier short stop in the AL (65 RC, 7.6 RC/27). Michael Young was a good choice (57 RC, 6.6 RC/27), though a strong case could be made for Derek Jeter (56 RC, 6.5 RC/27, and ever-so-slightly better defense than Young).
LF- Manny Ramirez The fans screwed up here. Ramirez (53 RC, 6.5 RC/27) is having a down year, and Hideki Matsui (56 RC, 6.7 RC/27), Kevin Mench (52 RC, 7.5 RC/27), or David Delluci (50 RC, 8.6 RC/27) would have all made better choices. My vote personally goes to Delluci whose revival in Texas has gone beyond park effects. Garret Anderson (45 RC, 5.4 RC/27) is a horrible choice as the back up in left. The three aforementioned players are all more deserving and Anderson makes Manny seem like a Gold Glover. Carl Crawford (49 RC, 5 RC/27, and spectacular defense) would have also been a better choice than Anderson.
CF- Johnny Damon Damon (59 RC, 7.3 RC/27) has really enjoyed a revival the past two years. He’s hitting the stuffing out of the ball and is still pretty good defensively (though he is slowing). I would have preferred Grady Sizemore (49 RC, 6.1 RC/27, +25 runs/162 on defense), but Damon works as well. What’s sad, however, is that Sizemore is nowhere to be found as Terry Francona apparently found it unnecessary to have a back up center fielder. By the way, the AL has an amazing crop of young center fielders that has gone unnoticed in Sizemore, Jeremy Reed, David DeJesus, Aaron Rowand, Laynce Nix, and Vernon Wells. Not for long.
RF- Vladimir Guererro Guererro (55 RC, 9.2 RC/27) is a great choice, and an MVP candidate again. Gary Sheffield (57 RC, 7.2 RC/27) and Ichiro! (51 RC, 5.7 RC/27) are deserving back ups, though I would have liked to see Sizemore on the roster instead of Ichiro!.
Pitchers- Mark Buehrle, Bartolo Colon, Jon Garland, Roy Halladay, Kenny Rogers, Johan Santana, Danys Baez, Justin Duchscherer, Joe Nathan, Mariano Rivera, BJ Ryan, Bob Wickman Any pitcher in the top-ten in Pitching Runs Created should be an automatic, so count Halladay (57 PRC), Santana (55 PRC), Buehrle (53 PRC), and Colon (42 PRC) as automatically approved. Ryan, Rivera, Duchscherer, and Nathan are all having incredible seasons, so they’re fine too. But what about Garland, Rogers, Baez, and Wickman? Garland leads the AL in wins, but he’s been extremely lucky and has had a lot of help from his defense. He only ranks 24th in PRC (35), while Rogers is 36th (32 PRC); Matt Clement (47 PRC) and Randy Johnson (43 PRC) were much more deserving choices. Wickman has been extremely lucky, his FIP is almost three runs worse than his ERA. Sizemore would have been a much, much better representative for Cleveland. Baez too has been very lucky, but he also hasn’t been special when you look at his fielding dependent numbers. I would have rather seen Crawford as Tampa’s representative. Then guys like Jeremy Bonderman (41 PRC) and Freddy Garcia (41 PRC) could have made it.
I’ll be back with commentary on the NL selections a little later tonight.

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2 Responses to All-Star Rosters

  1. Evan says:

    My only beef is no Hafner … not even in the Final Vote!!

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