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July 1, 2011

All-Star Selections

Staff Picks for 2011

by Baseball Prospectus

It’s July, and that means another All-Star Game, one which—we might as well get this out of the way now—won’t be as exciting as those wonderful old All-Star Games  when important things happened, like Ted Williams breaking his elbow and Dizzy Dean breaking a toe (Williams said he was never the same hitter; Dean destroyed his arm with altered mechanics) and Ray Fosse getting run over because damn it, Pete Rose just had to win an exhibition game.

(It is at times like these that I like to recall Mickey Mantle’s immortal words on the subject of Rose: “If I had played my career hitting singles like Pete, I’d wear a dress.”)

Sure, I sound cynical, but it seems to me that in recent years that the thing folks like best about the All-Star Game is complaining about it. They complain about who is on the roster and who is off, the size of the rosters, the way the managers use the rosters, and the way that Baseball tried to make an exhibition important by adding the non-sequitur that is a postseason punishment to the league that loses.

As we often do at this time, we asked our staff to give us their own All-Star ballots. Below we present 15 lineup cards for you to compare to the official versions that will be released on Sunday. When last MLB clued us in, the leading vote-getters at each position looked like this:

POS

AL

NL

C

Russell Martin

Brian McCann

1B

Adrian Gonzalez

Albert Pujols

2B

Robinson Cano

Rickie Weeks

3B

Alex Rodriguez

Placido Polanco

SS

Derek Jeter

Troy Tulowitzki

OF

Jose Bautista

Ryan Braun

OF

Curtis Granderson

Lance Berkman

OF

Josh Hamilton

Matt Holliday

DH

David Ortiz

---

As you would expect, our ballots diverge from those of the unschooled masses; there is nary a Martin, Jeter, or Polanco in sight. There are also some large swaths of agreement. However, even within our own ranks there are areas of disagreement, particularly in the matter of who should start the games (Baseball appoints these guys, but we cast our votes anyway) and who deserved the third outfield spot in each league, since there is no clear choice in either circuit:

We preferred Justin Verlander to start the game for the American League over Jered Weaver by a vote of 8-7. No other starting pitcher was named. Ben Zobrist out-poled Robinson Cano for the AL keystone spot 9-6. Dustin Pedroia was dissed. In the Junior Circuit outfield, Curtis Granderson and Jose Baustista appeared on every ballot, but the third spot was split among Alex Gordon (five votes), Jacoby Ellsbury (three), Brett Gardner (two), Matt Joyce (two), Brennan Boesch, Adam Jones, and Carlos Quentin (one each).

In the National League outfield voting, Matt Kemp and Ryan Braun appeared on every ballot, but thereafter there was a similar chaos, with choices for the third spot scattered to Lance Berkman (five votes) , Andrew McCutchen (five), Justin Upton (four), and Jay Bruce (one).

The All-Star rosters are a tremendous source for debate, and I suppose that anything that gets people talking about the game is good (unless it’s Frank McCourt), and as an experiment in crowd sourcing (however imperfect due to, among other things, unbalanced attendance) it has its value as a snapshot of who believed what about which players at a given moment in time. Here is our snapshot, one we will no doubt continue to debate with you right through our annual in-game chat on July 12—Steven Goldman

Individual Ballots:  

 


R.J. Anderson

POS

AL

NL

C

Alex Avila

Brian McCann

1B

Adrian Gonzalez

Prince Fielder

2B

Ben Zobrist

Rickie Weeks

3B

Alex Rodriguez

Chase Headley

SS

Asdrubal Cabrera

Jose Reyes

OF

Alex Gordon

Ryan Braun

OF

Curtis Granderson

Andrew McCutchen

OF

Jose Bautista

Matt Kemp

DH

Miguel Cabrera

Joey Votto

SP

Jered Weaver

Roy Halladay


Craig Brown

POS

AL

NL

C

Alex Avila

Brian McCann

1B

Miguel Cabrera

Prince Fielder

2B

Ben Zobrist

Rickie Weeks

3B

Alex Rodriguez

Chase Headley

SS

Asdrubal Cabrera

Jose Reyes

OF

Alex Gordon

Ryan Braun

OF

Curtis Granderson

Matt Kemp

OF

Jose Bautista

Justin Upton

DH

David Ortiz

---

SP

Justin Verlander

Roy Halladay


Derek Carty

POS

AL

NL

C

Alex Avila

Brian McCann

1B

Adrian Gonzalez

Prince Fielder

2B

Ben Zobrist

Rickie Weeks

3B

Alex Rodriguez

Chase Headley

SS

Jhonny Peralta

Jose Reyes

OF

Jacoby Ellsbury

Ryan Braun

OF

Curtis Granderson

Matt Kemp

OF

Jose Bautista

Andrew McCutchen

SP

Justin Verlander

Roy Halladay


Charles Dahan

POS

AL

NL

C

Alex Avila

Brian McCann

1B

Adrian Gonzalez

Prince Fielder

2B

Robinson Cano

Rickie Weeks

3B

Alex Rodriguez

Aramis Ramirez

SS

Asdrubal Cabrera

Troy Tulowitzki

OF

Adam Jones

Ryan Braun

OF

Curtis Granderson

Matt Kemp

OF

Jose Bautista

Jay Bruce

SP

Jered Weaver

Roy Halladay


Corey Dawkins

POS

AL

NL

C

Victor Martinez

Brian McCann

1B

Adrian Gonzalez

Prince Fielder

2B

Robinson Cano

Rickie Weeks

3B

Kevin Youkilis

Ryan Roberts

SS

Asdrubal Cabrera

Jose Reyes

OF

Brennan Boesch

Ryan Braun

OF

Curtis Granderson

Matt Kemp

OF

Jose Bautista

Lance Berkman

SP

Justin Verlander

Roy Halladay


Jeff Euston 

POS

AL

NL

C

Alex Avila

Brian McCann

1B

Miguel Cabrera

Prince Fielder

2B

Robinson Cano

Rickie Weeks

3B

Alex Rodriguez

Aramis Ramirez

SS

Asdrubal Cabrera

Jose Reyes

OF

Matt Joyce

Ryan Braun

OF

Curtis Granderson

Matt Kemp

OF

Jose Bautista

Lance Berkman

SP

Justin Verlander

Roy Halladay


Ken Funck  

POS

AL

NL

C

Alex Avila

Brian McCann

1B

Adrian Gonzalez

Prince Fielder

2B

Ben Zobrist

Rickie Weeks

3B

Kevin Youkilis

Chase Headley

SS

Asdrubal Cabrera

Jose Reyes

OF

Alex Gordon

Ryan Braun

OF

Curtis Granderson

Matt Kemp

OF

Jose Bautista

Lance Berkman

DH

David Ortiz

---

SP

Jered Weaver

Roy Halladay


Steven Goldman 

POS

AL

NL

C

Alex Avila

Brian McCann

1B

Adrian Gonzalez

Prince Fielder

2B

Ben Zobrist

Rickie Weeks

3B

Alex Rodriguez

Chase Headley

SS

Asdrubal Cabrera

Jose Reyes

OF

Alex Gordon

Andrew McCutchen

OF

Curtis Granderson

Matt Kemp

OF

Jose Bautista

Ryan Braun

DH

Miguel Cabrera

---

SP

Jered Weaver

Roy Halladay


Kevin Goldstein 

POS

AL

NL

C

Alex Avila

Brian McCann

1B

Miguel Cabrera

Prince Fielder

2B

Robinson Cano

Rickie Weeks

3B

Kevin Youkilis

Chase Headley

SS

Asdrubal Cabrera

Jose Reyes

OF

Jose Bautista

Ryan Braun

OF

Curtis Granderson

Matt Kemp

OF

Carlos Quentin

Lance Berkman

SP

Justin Verlander

Clayton Kershaw


Larry Granillo 

POS

AL

NL

C

Alex Avila

Brian McCann

1B

Adrian Gonzalez

Joey Votto

2B

Robinson Cano

Rickie Weeks

3B

Alex Rodriguez

Chase Headley

SS

Asdrubal Cabrera

Jose Reyes

OF

Matt Joyce

Justin Upton

OF

Curtis Granderson

Matt Kemp

OF

Jose Bautista

Ryan Braun

DH

David Ortiz

Prince Fielder

SP

Jered Weaver

Cliff Lee


Joe Hamrahi 

POS

AL

NL

C

Alex Avila

Brian McCann

1B

Miguel Cabrera

Prince Fielder

2B

Robinson Cano

Rickie Weeks

3B

Alex Rodriguez

Aramis Ramirez

SS

Asdrubal Cabrera

Jose Reyes

OF

Curtis Granderson

Ryan Braun

OF

Jose Bautista

Matt Kemp

OF

Jacoby Ellsbury

Lance Berkman

SP

Justin Verlander

Cliff Lee


Ben Lindbergh 

POS

AL

NL

C

Alex Avila

Brian McCann

1B

Adrian Gonzalez

Prince Fielder

2B

Ben Zobrist

Rickie Weeks

3B

Alex Rodriguez

Chase Headley

SS

Asdrubal Cabrera

Jose Reyes

OF

Brett Gardner

Ryan Braun

OF

Curtis Granderson

Matt Kemp

OF

Jose Bautista

Justin Upton

SP

Jered Weaver

Roy Halladay


Rob McQuown

POS

AL

NL

C

Alex Avila

Brian McCann

1B

Miguel Cabrera

Joey Votto

2B

Robinson Cano

Danny Espinosa

3B

Kevin Youkilis

Chase Headley

SS

Asdrubal Cabrera

Jose Reyes

OF

Alex Gordon

Ryan Braun

OF

Curtis Granderson

Matt Kemp

OF

Jose Bautista

Andrew McCutchen

SP

Jered Weaver

Roy Halladay

 

Ben Murphy 

POS

AL

NL

C

Alex Avila

Brian McCann

1B

Adrian Gonzalez

Joey Votto

2B

Ben Zobrist

Rickie Weeks

3B

Alex Rodriguez

Chipper Jones

SS

Asdrubal Cabrera

Jose Reyes

OF

Alex Gordon

Ryan Braun

OF

Curtis Granderson

Matt Kemp

OF

Jose Bautista

Andrew McCutchen

DH

Miguel Cabrera

Lance Berkman

SP

Jered Weaver

Clayton Kershaw


John Perrotto 

POS

AL

NL

C

Alex Avila

Brian McCann

1B

Adrian Gonzalez

Prince Fielder

2B

Ben Zobrist

Rickie Weeks

3B

Alex Rodriguez

Chase Headley

SS

Asdrubal Cabrera

Jose Reyes

OF

Jacoby Ellsbury

Ryan Braun

OF

Curtis Granderson

Matt Kemp

OF

Jose Bautista

Andrew McCutchen

DH

David Ortiz

---

SP

Justin Verlander

Clayton Kershaw


Dan Turkenkopf 

POS

AL

NL

C

Alex Avila

Brian McCann

1B

Adrian Gonzalez

Joey Votto

2B

Ben Zobrist

Rickie Weeks

3B

Alex Rodriguez

Chase Headley

SS

Asdrubal Cabrera

Jose Reyes

OF

Brett Gardner

Ryan Braun

OF

Curtis Granderson

Matt Kemp

OF

Jose Bautista

Justin Upton

DH

Miguel Cabrera

Prince Fielder

SP

Justin Verlander

Roy Halladay

50 comments have been left for this article. (Click to hide comments)

BP Comment Quick Links

Ric Size

Please start doing this every year. It tells the reader a lot about how each writer evaluates players, plus it's fun to compare.

Jul 01, 2011 04:44 AM
rating: 0
 
pauldeeds

You've got Matt Holliday where I think you should have Matt Kemp.

Jul 01, 2011 05:45 AM
rating: -1
 
pauldeeds

Nevermind, I realize now that list is based on the current fan votes.

Jul 01, 2011 05:47 AM
rating: 0
 
T. Kiefer

Your ballots are refreshing when compared to the popularity contest that is current fan voting, which in turn is determined by market size.

Jul 01, 2011 06:20 AM
rating: 1
 
cbmets

How can anyone not choose Jose Reyes for starting shortstop in NL.

Jul 01, 2011 07:34 AM
rating: 4
 
jlister

Because he wants to be "different"? Like the guy who says Godfather III is the best of the series...

Jul 01, 2011 13:47 PM
rating: 0
 
amazin_mess

Im a Mets and Reyes fan, but I think the choice between him and Tulo is extremely tough.

Jul 01, 2011 15:24 PM
rating: 1
 
vtadave

Not that tough. Reyes has him by 84 points of OPS and easily in WAR - 5.3 to 3.4.

Jul 02, 2011 21:00 PM
rating: 0
 
tommybones

Godfather II IS the best of the series.

Jul 02, 2011 11:01 AM
rating: 0
 
David Laurila

The one choice I'd like to see defended here is Ryan Roberts at 3B in the NL. Roberts has a slash line of .251/.339/.433 playing in one of the best hitting environments in baseball. Chase Headley, the more popular BP choice, is at .299/.394/.403 playing in MLB's most-pitcher-friendly ballpark. Unless there is a chasm of difference defensively, and I don't believe there is, Headley is heads above Roberts.

Jul 01, 2011 07:39 AM
rating: 0
 
Peter7899

Really surprising to see the love for Aramis at 3B for the NL. Talk about a down year at the hot corner in the Senior Circuit...

Jul 01, 2011 11:17 AM
rating: 0
 
bbienk01

Yeah with Ryan Zimmerman and Pablo Sandoval each missing most of the first half, and Chipper Zones and Scott Rolen continuing to show their age, there wasn't much this year.

Jul 01, 2011 11:36 AM
rating: 0
 
BP staff member Joe Hamrahi
BP staff

Don't forget David Wright.It definitely has been an off year for 3B. Personally, I had a hard time selecting anyone. I gave consideration to Ramirez (my ultimate selection), Headley and Polanco. I can't remember the last time third base had so few worthy candidates.

Jul 04, 2011 23:40 PM
 
CRP13

I was looking forward to Jason Parks' vote for R.A. Dickey. I guess he didn't get a ballot this year.

Jul 01, 2011 08:06 AM
rating: 1
 
BP staff member Jason Parks
BP staff

I was watching short-season baseball last night and failed to submit a ballot. That said, my ballot would look like this:

AL/NL

C: Alfaro/Alfaro
1B: Gonzalez/Fielder
2B: Cano/Weeks
SS: Cabrera/Reyes
3B: Rodriguez/Headley
OF:Granderson/Braun
OF Ellsbury/Kemp
OF: Bautista/Upton
DH: Ortiz/Berkman
P: Dickey/Dickey

Jul 01, 2011 12:08 PM
 
formersd

A local sports talk show was debating who the Padres' all-star would be a few weeks ago and they were debating Heath Bell vs. Mike Adams. Headley never got brought up. He's the stealth candidate even is his own home town. In fairness, he's been on an absolute tear since that show was on, but still...

Jul 01, 2011 09:28 AM
rating: 0
 
potterjd

My recollection of the All-Star rosters of the 60's and 70's is that they were composed of players whose selections were based on their "bodies of work." Players were considered to be All-Stars based on their relative performance at their respective positions over their entire careers and not just the first 75 games of the current season. For example, Johnny Bench was an All-Star from 1968 through 1980. Yet, his performance in a couple of years -- 1971 and 1976 (age 28 season) -- were less than Bench-like. Still, I expected to see him starting for the NL since he was the best catcher of his generation. That's what I remember. As I enter my mid-50's, it's possible that my memory is fading or that the purpose of the All-Star Game has changed.

Jul 01, 2011 10:19 AM
rating: 0
 
Andrew Martinez

Wait a minute, Brennan Boesch is an All-Star according to Corey Dawkins? This needs some major explaining.

Jul 01, 2011 12:54 PM
rating: 0
 
vtadave

You can't explain Boesch...

Jul 02, 2011 21:05 PM
rating: -1
 
SimplyFalco

You should have a composite ballot based on your internal voting.

Jul 01, 2011 13:14 PM
rating: 0
 
John Douglass

With a tip of the hat to Jason Collette....

Who Am I?

I have just a bit less WARP than Justin Upton in over 100 fewer PA and a TAv six points higher than Ryan Braun. If I qualified for the batting title, I'd be 4th in baseball in wOBA this year. Nothing new, since I'm 7th in wOBA since entering the majors in 2004, just a point behind both Miguel Cabrera and one of my current teammates. And I'm having the second best season of my career, a couple minor injuries aside, which will probably mean by season's end I'm the fifth best hitter in the last eight years.

Sadly, I'm underrated everywhere. Despite being the 7th best hitter in baseball the last 7.5 years, I was drafted, on average with the 18.6th pick in ESPN fantasy leagues this season. And the hometown fans under-appreciate me because I'm not a certain someone I hit behind. I'm underrated at BP, too, where I didn't get a single vote.

Jul 01, 2011 13:54 PM
rating: 1
 
amazin_mess

Matt Holliday

Jul 01, 2011 15:27 PM
rating: 1
 
John Douglass

Of course.

Jul 01, 2011 15:31 PM
rating: 0
 
CRP13

Hard to say that Holliday has a definitive statistical edge over Braun, Kemp, Berkman, McCutchen, Upton, or even Pence, who isn't shown any love either.

Maybe in some of the stats you mentioned, but clearly not in others.

Jul 02, 2011 14:15 PM
rating: 0
 
BP staff member Joe Hamrahi
BP staff

For what it's worth, I wrestled with selecting Berkman over Pence. I'm still wrestling with it, in fact.

Jul 04, 2011 23:37 PM
 
mattb2485

Huge Indians fan here....but not sure I buy all the Asdrubal love.

Jhonny Peralta has him beat in BA (meaningless though), OBP, SLG, and OPS. He's up in wOBA and RC+. He's tied in HRs and in WAR (fangraphs).

And you can't really use defense since Jhonny is tied or better in pretty much all defensive rankings.

Would like to know why Cabrera is getting all the love at SS in the AL.

Jul 01, 2011 15:50 PM
rating: 0
 
antoine6

I assume the people selecting Kershaw over Halladay to start just want some fresh blood and are trying to not pick "chalk"

I love Kershaw. But why on earth would anyone except Halladay start the ASG? I mean, no one on here would actually pick Kershaw over Doc to pitch Game 7 of the WS, would they?

Jul 01, 2011 17:33 PM
rating: 0
 
bugbear

I was curious about this as well, not just because of the "who would you want pitching Game Seven of WS?" factor but also because Halladay has had a better year thus far, and the best in the majors, far as I could tell.

So, I looked up the stats listed on BP, and for some reason, they had Halladay listed at 15th in WARP among pitchers and 6th in PVORP (prior to yesterday's game), despite leading the league in just about every advanced pitching indicator (SIERA, xFIP, FIP, etc) along with, of course, innings pitched. PVORP even has Derek Lowe first in the majors, which makes no sense whatsoever...does anyone have an explanation for this? What's going on over there?

Jul 03, 2011 09:54 AM
rating: 1
 
dom

I miss Joe Sheehan's take on the all-star stuff, better than this

Jul 01, 2011 23:20 PM
rating: -2
 
skarski10

The ASG is about who is having the best year to date, not who you would start in game 7 of the WS.

With that being said, why is there no love for Jurrjens? He has the lowest ERA in the major after last night and is tied for most wins. Yeah he's not the K's pitch like Halladay and Kershaw, but you can't argue with the results.

I'm not saying that he should be the one to start the ASG, but just wanted to know why he wasn't even considered as the starter by anyone. Any thoughts?

Jul 02, 2011 09:32 AM
rating: -1
 
mattb2485

I'm guessing maybe because he was on the DL for a while this year. Yeah his numbers are very good, but personally think the starter should be a guy who's been in there every game from Day 1 (though just my opinion).

Jul 02, 2011 12:23 PM
rating: 0
 
Patrick M

"The ASG is about who is having the best year to date, not who you would start in game 7 of the WS"

Really? Where did that rule come from?

That is your opinion, not a rule.

Jul 02, 2011 16:55 PM
rating: 1
 
John Collins
(110)

Agreed. Didn't Bill James convincingly dispense with this "it's for the guy with the best first half" view almost 30 years ago? One year, people were saying that it was an injustice that George Brett was elected instead of...Toby Harrah. Of course, though Harrah might have been 5% better through June 15, Brett was obviously the superior ballplayer, and it is absurd to think the All-Star Game would have been better served by having Harrah in his stead.

Jul 02, 2011 19:31 PM
rating: 0
 
greensox

James has his opinion like anyone else. IMO, that's what a roster is for - to fit both Harrah and Brett on the team.
I'd say pitchers is even more about the first half.

Jul 03, 2011 07:43 AM
rating: 0
 
greensox

Now I see Valverde makes the team: I guess it's not about the first half (or any half).

Jul 04, 2011 08:58 AM
rating: 0
 
mattb2485

Since when has the All-Star game not been about the guys having the best first halves of the season? The reason fans get to vote in starters is they get to see the players they like (even if they stink like Jeter). The benches and pitching staffs though are about who's pitching the best and most deserving.

I guess that is my "opinion" but it's the opinion of most people actually because it's just how things are typically done in All-Star games.

Jul 04, 2011 08:24 AM
rating: 0
 
CRP13

Did you really come on here and quote ERA and Wins as stats by which to judge a pitcher? For shame. This isn't ESPN.

Jul 04, 2011 15:49 PM
rating: 1
 
John Carter

With the entire BP staff split amongst a bunch of third A.L. outfielders not named Josh Hamilton, they are, imo, putting way too much weight on first half 2011 performance. Hamilton is going strong and deserves that third spot as the mass of fans recognize. One for the masses over the elites. (Usually I side with the elites.)

The all-star game is a great honor. It is a measure by which we rate the greatness of players. It seems a shame to use only the first half of a season to decide who deserves such an honor. It is also more in the spirit of an all-star game to see the best vs. the best, rather than the hot vs. the hot.

Jul 03, 2011 19:57 PM
rating: 0
 
evo34

I'd rather see the hot vs. the hot. Just like I prefer the World Series champion to be whichever team was hottest during a given season and a given playoffs -- not whichever team has the highest lifetime achievement.

Jul 03, 2011 22:21 PM
rating: 0
 
edwardarthur

Agree 100%, hot! I was shocked that no one named Hamilton.

Jul 04, 2011 11:58 AM
rating: 0
 
BStephen

rob, rob, rob

Danny Espinoza over Weeks ??? Puhleese!!

Jul 04, 2011 08:10 AM
rating: 0
 
R.A.Wagman

All-Star games are like fireworks displays. They can be very pretty to watch for a few minutes, but ultimately tend to get boring and repetitive, and they don't really mean anything.

Jul 04, 2011 09:33 AM
rating: 0
 
carlbrownson

I'd have enjoyed watching one of Braun/Berkman/Holliday play center field for a few innings, had that fan vote played out.

Jul 04, 2011 10:30 AM
rating: 0
 
dodgerken222

I used to like the All-Star Game. Johnny Callison hitting a homer in the 9th was exciting. Pete Rose crashing into Ray Fosse was memorable. Contrasting American League powerball vs. National League speed was interesting to watch. Willie Mays getting four or five ABs against AL star starting pitchers held my attention. Now, with players changing leagues all of the time, pitchers in for just one inning, nobody playing more than half a game....I just wish that they would put the All-Star game out of its misery. Same for the interminable Home Run Derby. Now that the game "means something", it's the suckiest event of the baseball calendar.
Why anyone should expect the public, who make Lady Gaga a superstar and "Meet The Fockers" a movie franchise, not ot mention electing certain nameless political leaders, should be expected to show intelligence in vting for an All-Star team is beyond me.
That's my 4th of July address.

Jul 04, 2011 11:47 AM
rating: -2
 
John Carter

Re: hot vs. hot (here because my Post Reply doesn't work) - going by the players who produced the best stats during the first two or three months of the season doesn't even do a good a job of getting you the players most likely to play the best at the all-star game. It has been shown right here in Baseball Prospectus that if a player seems to be on a hot streak, it doesn't increase his chances of continuing hot the next game. Unless you have a case where a player learned a new trick or is suffering an injury, the player's who's mean production is greater (considering context) over the last couple years (not lifetime) is more likely to do better at his next game than the player with a lower mean but coming off a hot streak.

Jul 04, 2011 12:16 PM
rating: 1
 
dodgerken222

Derek Jeter hasn't been hot since the Bush administration. But the media tells us that he's got edge, and the sheep follow.

Jul 04, 2011 12:35 PM
rating: 0
 
dodgerken222

A good half-season is not a "hot streak" Russell Martin had a hot streak in April and now he's in the .220s. Andre Ethier had a hot streak in April and now his production is mediocre at best for a corner outfielder. I mean, to produce over an 80-game period deserves more respect than calling it a hot streak. It's called the 2011 All-Star Game, accent on 2011. If I cared at all about this over-hyped, insanely-managed exhibition game, it's the players having a great 2011 that I want to see. History belongs in museums.

Jul 04, 2011 12:44 PM
rating: 0
 
John Carter

Skip if you are sick of this arguement - not really adding anything new here - just clarifying my point and refuting a part of dodgerken222's: Well, the "best" players do change from year to year. I also want to see the best players "now" - or for the year in which the game is played. I accept your point that 80 games is more than a streak. However, a) most votes are made long before that 80th game; b) 80 games is generally not as good as 180 games at determing who is best. Although, I agree the most recent 80 games should be worth more than 80 games from last year, but only about the same as the previous 160 games and about the same as the previous 320 games before then. There are authors here who can do the math more precisely, but my point is, getting the players who are the best right now - by whatever is the best way of measuring - is preferable to getting the guys who happened to produce the best stats in the first half of the all-star year. I would be very surprised if the odds are greater that Alex Gordon, Jacob Ellsbury, Adam Jones, Brennan Boesch (what?), Carlos Quentin, Matt Joyce, and Brett Gardner will have a better July than Josh Hamiliton. Odds are they won't even end up having a better 2011 - and that's what you want don't you - the best players of 2011? Derek Jeter is a straw man arguement. Off the top of my head, I support Asdrubal Cabrera's or Alexei Ramirez's or Yunel Escobar's selections over Jeter at this stage of his career.

Jul 04, 2011 13:42 PM
rating: 0
 
dodgerken222

It's sometimes quite amazing how much a player can decline from one year to the next, particularly in the twilight of his career. I recall one year when Mike Schmidt, the greatest third baseman ever, had such a terrible start in April and May that he retired before June. Then he was elected to the All-Star team. The problem could be solved if certain players (Hi Derek, Hi Russell) would simply announce that they do not deserve to be All-Stars in a particular year and decline the honor, even if elected. Oh, Selig and the media jackals would bray on about how the game belongs to the fans ad nauseum, but I think it would show great class on the players' part and set a great precedent. We finally have players and skippers going public about the pathetic quality of today's umpiring; the joke that has become the All-Star game should be next addressed.

Jul 04, 2011 21:49 PM
rating: 0
 
sandriola

The best All-Star Game is going to find a way to get all the superstars (emphasis on super) on the rosters and let the rest fall where they may. So Konerko didn't make it. Oh well. I'd rather watch Cabrera.

Jul 05, 2011 19:03 PM
rating: 0
 
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