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July 2, 2010

On the Beat

Friday Update

by John Perrotto

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The fan balloting ended at midnight and the managers, players, and coaches have also cast their votes. Thus, the only thing to do is wait it out until Sunday afternoon when Major League Baseball announces the roster for the All-Star Game, which will be played July 13 in Anaheim.

But why wait until Sunday? Let's take a peek at the All-Star rosters.

OK, they're not the official All-Star roster. Bud Selig doesn't trust me enough to pick 34-man squads for both the American and National leagues. However, I'll take a stab anyway and fill out the rosters for both sides, leaning on BP metrics to help make the selections and keeping in mind the All-Star rules that require each of the 30 to have a representative and both squads have at least 14 pitchers in the unlikely event the game lasts 34 innings.

American League

Starters
First baseman: Justin Morneau, Twins. Flashing that 2006 MVP form again.
Second baseman: Robinson Cano, Yankees. Has gone from a good player to a star right before our eyes.
Third baseman: Adrian Beltre, Red Sox. Having a heckuva offensive year for a guy who was supposed to prevent runs.
ShortstopDerek Jeter, Yankees. The production is matching the intangibles.
CatcherJoe Mauer, Twins. Even in an "off year," he's still awfully good.
OutfieldersCarl Crawford, Rays; Josh Hamilton, Rangers; and Alex Rios, White Sox. Crawford is setting himself up for a huge contract as a free agent next winter, Hamilton is resurrecting his career for a second time, and Rios has shown that Ken Williams wasn't so crazy after all.
Designated hitter: Vladimir Guerrero, Rangers. Well, so much for the idea that he is over the hill.
PitcherJon Lester, Red Sox. No AL pitcher has truly stood above the rest, but Lester has been pretty darn good.

Reserves
C: Jorge Posada, Yankees (injury replacement for Victor Martinez, Red Sox); 1B: Miguel Cabrera, Tigers; 2B: Ty Wigginton, Orioles; 3B: Evan Longoria, Rays, SS: Elvis Andrus, Rangers, OF: Brennan Boesch, Tigers; Shin-Soo Choo, Indians; David DeJesus, Royals; Brett Gardner, Yankees; Vernon Wells, Blue Jays, DH: David Ortiz, Red Sox.

Pitchers
Clay Buchholz, Red Sox; Trevor Cahill, Athletics; Felix Hernandez, Mariners; Cliff Lee, Mariners; Francisco Liriano, Twins; Jeff Niemann, Rays; Darren Oliver, Rangers; Andy Pettitte, Yankees; David Price, Rays; Mariano Rivera, Yankees; Ricky Romero, Blue Jays; Jose Valverde, Tigers; Jered Weaver, Angels.

National League

Starters
First baseman: Adrian Gonzalez, Padres. He single-handedly tries to destroy the idea that Petco Park is a pitcher's paradise.
Second baseman: Martin Prado, Braves. Has gone from a super utilityman to a potential superstar.
Third baseman: David Wright, Mets. Reports of his demise were greatly exaggerated.
Shortstop: Hanley Ramirez, Marlins. An outstanding player, even when he forgets to hustle.
Catcher: Brian McCann, Braves. Having another outstanding, and unnoticed, season.
Outfielders: Marlon Byrd, Cubs; Matt Holliday, Cardinals; Andres Torres, Giants. Byrd is one of the few Jim Hendry signings that has worked out, Holliday has proven to be worth the $120 million so far, and Torres is just 
defying all logic.
PitcherUbaldo Jimenez, Rockies. More than anyone, he has fueled all the "Year of the Pitcher" talk.

Reserves
C: Miguel Olivo, Rockies; 1B: Albert Pujols, Cardinals; Joey Votto, Reds; 2B: Kelly Johnson, Diamondbacks; Brandon Phillips, Reds (injury replacement for Chase Utley, Phillies); 3B: Scott Rolen, Reds; SS: Rafael Furcal, Dodgers (injury replacement for Troy Tulowitzki, Rockies); OF: Andre Ethier, Dodgers; Angel Pagan, Mets; Colby Rasmus, Cardinals; Jayson Werth, Phillies; Josh Willingham, Nationals

Pitchers
Matt Cain, Giants; Chris Carpenter, Cardinals; Tyler Clippard, Nationals; Yovani Gallardo, Brewers; Jaime Garcia, Cardinals; Roy Halladay, Phillies; Tim Hudson, Braves; Josh Johnson, Marlins; Evan Meek, Pirates; Roy Oswalt, Astros; Mike Pelfrey, Mets; Arthur Rhodes, Reds; Adam Wainwright, Cardinals.

---

Rarely does a day go by when Jack Zduriencik isn't asked about the status of Lee. Yet the Mariner's general manager understands all the fascination with left-hander, who figures to be perhaps the most attractive player on the market if the Mariners decide to deal him before the July 31 non-waiver deadline.

Zduriencik won't say whether or not he will trade Lee. However, the word around the Mariners is that they will gladly hold on to Lee and take two draft choices as compensation for losing him as a free agent in the winter if they don't find a deal to their liking.

"I think it's just good copy," Zduriencik said of all the Lee talk. "Everybody has to write, there's obvious things out there that are intriguing, if you're a true baseball fan, or a casual baseball fan. You have your hometown team you root for, a lot of personal interest, and you have your emotions invested in the club. Anytime something happens, whether it's an injury, whether it's a winning streak, something that affects the balance of the ballclub, it's news, it's a curiosity. That's what drives talk radio, the blogs, people buying newspapers. It motivates people. You just have to take it in stride and understand that's all part of it."

Zduriencik is not actively shopping Lee. However, he is getting calls from other GMs and listening to what they have to say.

"If you try to force something, that's not the best way to do things," he said. "Right now, we want to win baseball games. That is our focus."

The Mariners certainly don't look like they have given up on the season despite being in last place in the AL West with a 33-45 record, 14 games behind the division-leading Rangers. The Mariners went 14-13 in June and have won nine of their last 13 games.

---

The Marlins ended their fiasco of a managerial search this week, saying that interim skipper Edwin Rodriguez would remain in charge through the end of the season. The Marlins had interviewed Rodriguez and Diamondbacks third base coach Bo Porter last weekend for the job that was supposedly going to ESPN analyst Bobby Valentine, former manager of the Rangers and Mets.

The Marlins offered Valentine a four-year contract. However, Valentine decided not to accept because he had questions about owner Jeffrey Loria's commitment to ultimately increasing the payroll and how much say so he would have over the composition of the roster.

Thus, Rodriguez, who had been managing the Marlins' Triple-A New Orleans farm club before being promoted last week when Fredi Gonzalez was fired, will have the remainder of the season to prove himself. Bench coach Brandon Hyde, hitting coach John Mallee, and first-base coach Tarrik Brock will also stay on through the end of the season after they were promoted when bench coach Carlos Tosca and hitting coach Jim Presley were fired along with Gonzalez, and first-base coach Dave Collins resigned in protest.

"Continuity is important, and that's what we will do," Loria said. "What continues to always be my first and foremost concern are the players, and I thought the continuity of that was the most important thing we could do."

The Marlins' players do indeed seem relieved that they will not have to worry about getting used to a manager from outside the organization in the middle of the season.

"It's huge," left fielder Chris Coghlan said. "Now we know this is our coaching staff, this is our manager, this is who we're playing for. We don't have to be in limbo worrying about other things. It gives everybody peace of mind."

---

MLB Rumors and Rumblings: Nationals first baseman Adam Dunn is at the top of the White Sox' wish list, but they are balking at giving up right fielder Carlos Quentin in return. … The Padres want to add a starting pitcher and an outfielder and are said to be willing to give up closer Heath Bell to acquire one or both in the right trade. … The Braves have again ramped up their pursuit of Willingham. … Indians right-hander Jake Westbrook is drawing increased trade interest with the Cardinals reportedly at the top of the list.  … The Indians are also likely to call up Michael Brantley from Triple-A Columbus and install him as their center fielder and leadoff hitter no later than right after the All-Star break. … The Phillies are giving strong consideration to either using left-hander J.A. Happ as a reliever or optioning him to Triple-A Lehigh Valley when he is activated from the disabled list as he has been less than impressive in his injury rehabilitation starts in the minor leagues. … Felix Pie is expected to replace Corey Patterson as the Orioles' center fielder and leadoff hitter once he comes off the disabled list, perhaps as early as this weekend. … The Dodgers are expected to use a combination of Garret Anderson and Xavier Paul in left field if Manny Ramirez is forced to go on the disabled list with his hamstring injury. … The Reds are likely to call up top prospect Aroldis Chapman from Triple-A Louisville next week and put the left-hander in their bullpen.

John Perrotto is an author of Baseball Prospectus. 
Click here to see John's other articles. You can contact John by clicking here

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

BP Comment Quick Links

amazin_mess

Solid picks John. My only quabble would be the NL outfield. Hard to see those three over Braun, Gonzalez, McCutchen, Werth, Ethier.

Jul 02, 2010 03:34 AM
rating: 1
 
amazin_mess

One more...how does Brian Wilson not make it?

Jul 02, 2010 03:36 AM
rating: 0
 
jcjividen
Other readers have rated this comment below the viewing threshold. Click here to view anyway.

AL Starters
C J.Mauer (Min)
1B J.Morneau (Min)
2B R. Cano (NY)
SS A.Gonzalez (Tor)
3B E.Longoria (TB)
LF C.Crawford (TB)
CF F.Gutierrez (Sea)
RF J.Hamilton (Tex)
DH V.Guerrero (Tex)
P R.Romero (Tor)

Reserves
C. J.Jaso (TB) J. Molina (Tor)
1B K.Youkilis (Bos) M. Cabrera (Det)
2B D. Pedroia (Bos -Inj) (Injury Replacement - B. Zobrist TB)
SS E. Andrus (Tex) C. Pennington (Oak)
3B A.Beltre (Bos) A. Rodriguez (NY)
OF B. Boesch (Det) D.Dejesus (KC) A. Rios (Chi)

P C. Buchholz (Bos)
J. Lester (Bos)
C. Pavano (Min)
D. Price (TB)
S. Marcum (Tor)
J. Verlander (Det)
J.Weaver (LA)
C. Lewis (Tex)
F. Carmona (Cle)
J. Guthrie (Balt)

RP J. Valverde (Det)
M. Rivera (NY)

NL Starters
C M.Olivo (Col)
1B A.Pujols (StL)
2B M.Prado (Atl)
SS T.Tulowitzki (col-inj)
3B D.Wright (NY)
LF M.Holliday (StL)
CF A.McCutcheon (Pit)
RF J.Willingham (Was)
DH A.Gonzalez (SD)
P U.Jimenez (Col)

Reserves
C. B.McCann (Atl) I.Rodriguez (Was)
1B A.Huff (SF) J.Votto (Cin)
2B C.Utley (Phi-injured) R.Weeks (Mil) J.Uribe (SF - Injury Replacement)
SS R.Furcal (LA - Replacement Starter) H. Ramirez (FL - Injury Replacement)
3B S.Rolen (Cin) R.Zimmerman (Was)
OF A.Pagan (NY) A.Torres (SF) R.Braun (Mil)

P J.Johnson (FL)
Y.Gallardo (Mil)
T.Hudson (Atl)
A.Wainwright (StL)
R.Halladay (Phi)
M. Pelfrey (NY)
L.Hernandez (Was)
R.Oswalt (Hou)
R.Dempster (Chi)

RP B.Wagner (Atl)
T.Clippard (Was)

Jul 02, 2010 04:30 AM
rating: -21
 
David Coonce

Rather have Gregerson than Clippard or Meek. Otherwise, no real quibbles, although the team with the best pitching in the National League should probably send at least one pitcher to the ASG - Latos or Richard would be reasonable.

Jul 02, 2010 05:43 AM
rating: 0
 
rskelley9

Clippard is arguably the best set up man in the NL right now, and has certainly been the most consistent and most valuable man on the Nats pitching staff during the first half. He's been clutch, rarely gives up a big hit (or hit in general) and is often pitching two innings on back to back days...

Gregerson has been very good, but both Heath Bell and Mike Adams have been too. He's nowhere near as valuable to the Padres as Clippard has been for the Nats' and he pitches in the NL West, and in a home park that kills homeruns and invigorates inning-at-a-time relievers.

Jul 04, 2010 15:19 PM
rating: 0
 
David Coonce

Tyler Clippard:
51 IP, 39 Hits, 3 HR, 22 BB, 57 K, 220/300/345 Avgs Against, 1.20 WHIP. Clippard has been an average to below-average pitcher on the road, very good at home, and he has a lot of decisions.

Luke Gregerson:
40 IP, 18 Hits, 2 Hr, 6 BB, 51 K, 131/171/226 Avgs Against, 0.60 WHIP. Averages pretty much the same on the road as at home. Less decisions, different role.

I'd take Gregerson. 120 points of OPS are pretty important out of the bullpen, and giving up twice as many baserunners isn't a point in Clippard's favor.

Jul 04, 2010 17:56 PM
rating: 2
 
Cortyrone

Who's your NL backstop starter?

Jul 02, 2010 06:11 AM
rating: -1
 
hessshaun

Not quite sure why you want to see Torres strike out but I like some pretty strange things myself.

Jul 02, 2010 06:20 AM
rating: 3
 
patrickc

yeah, Byrd and Torres tabs seem a bit eccentric

Jul 02, 2010 06:39 AM
rating: 1
 
BP staff member perrotto
BP staff

The NL starting catcher should be Brian McCann. It accidental got whacked in the editing process. Like Casey Stengel said when asked why the Mets took catcher Hobie Landrith first in the 1962 NL expansion draft, "if you don't have a catcher, every pitch will roll to the backstop."

Jul 02, 2010 06:57 AM
 
tyjordan

Adam Jones is not going to play CF when Pie gets back????? I am guessing that is an error.

Jul 02, 2010 07:09 AM
rating: 0
 
TheRealNeal

That's what they should do, Pie's a better CF're than Jones, but you're right in that they probably wont' do it.

Jul 04, 2010 06:37 AM
rating: 0
 
todmod

Wow, really more important to get Brett Gardner in there than Kevin Youkilis?

Jul 02, 2010 07:48 AM
rating: 0
 
Drew Miller

Even more, would you rather have David Ortiz than Youk? Must be a lefty hitter thing.

Jul 05, 2010 13:38 PM
rating: 0
 
bozarowski

Phil Hughes has a 3.32 FIP and is already worth 2.0 WAR (also he's 10-2 for old timer stats) and Niemann is 4.40 FIP and 1.2 WAR (and a 6-2 record). I think Hughes deserves to make it over Niemann - and he would in real life considering Girardi is the manager.

Jul 02, 2010 09:01 AM
rating: 0
 
Mattorious

No love for Corey Hart? I think I would start him over Byrd and Torres.

Jul 02, 2010 09:30 AM
rating: 1
 
John Carter

Sorry, Darren Oliver and Ty Wigginton are not all-stars. Even as a card carrying Tigers fan, I'm reluctant to call Brennan Boesch an all-star, though, I'm happy to give him the beneifit of doubt. Oliver and Wigginton? No way.

Jul 02, 2010 09:36 AM
rating: 0
 
eloomis20

No Ichiro? I understand that maybe he doesn't deserve to start, but Brett Gardner instead? Really?

Jul 02, 2010 10:36 AM
rating: 0
 
John Carter

Right. Quite so. Gardner is no all-star, either. Ichiro most certainly is.

Of course, its the old argument about the merits of basing all-star selections based on the first three months of the season vs. who would you rather have on your team for the rest of the year - i.e. who is really better. Obviously I am in the latter camp.

Jul 02, 2010 12:35 PM
rating: 0
 
hyprvypr

It should be a combination of the two stat lines. Anyone who comes out of nowhere though and hits well should realistically NOT be on an All-Star team. We don't need any more Chris Shelton's on any All-Star teams, let them prove it. Let them earn it.

Jul 04, 2010 15:00 PM
rating: 0
 
Agent007

Wigginton at 2B only when there's a strikeout pitcher on the mound. I don't really seem him as deserving to represent the Orioles on the AL Allstars. Choosing Markakis could be justified (he's got an all-star arm, good OBP) or Berken.

Jul 02, 2010 10:44 AM
rating: 0
 
drevil

Hughes should be in over Buccholz, Neimann and Price. I also don't see how Cliff Lee isn't the AS Game starter, assuming he doesn't get traded to the NL.

Jul 02, 2010 11:06 AM
rating: 0
 
rskelley9

Hughes has been a very good pitcher, but he's also fallen apart lately. The Yankees already have 6 All-Stars and I doubt they're chomping at the bit to throw an injury prone, 24-year-old, star SP on to the roster when they're already trying to allow him to skip a few starts to give him rest.

Secondly, if anyone on the Yankees' staff has been short-changed it has been Andy Pettitte, who has pitched against better competition (Hughes is the 5th starter) and (therefore) without the 9 runs per game worth of run support. In the end however, Pettitte may end up on the roster if Sabathia is removed by Girardi once he gets the recognition.

Thirdly, David Price deserves to be on the roster well before Hughes. Not only is he the ace of the Rays' staff, but he's arguably the most valuable pitcher to his team (behind Lester) in the AL-- Lee and Sabathia have been indispensible, but the Mariners are in the basement and the Yankees' pitching staff could haved survived pretty well on Pettitte, Hughes, Vazquez, Burnett. The contending Rays wouldn't be where they are without Price.

Jul 04, 2010 15:31 PM
rating: 0
 
beerd90210

Torres as an all-star is ridiculous - he had a great May but his April and his June are just like the rest of his career. I'd also much rather see 2 time cy young Tim Linceum in there than Hudson or Garcia, niether of whom will have a sub 3 era by the end of the season, maybe the end of the month. Hudson has a 51-40 K/BB ratio - outrageous

Jul 02, 2010 11:09 AM
rating: 2
 
hyprvypr

Torres has zero business as an All-Star, even if you count half a season. Get him out of there, garbage.

Jul 04, 2010 14:57 PM
rating: 0
 
Ogremace

Yeah I don't see how you've got Buchholz Price and Niemann and no Hughes. And no Braun. I was so surprised by this Torres guy being selected I looked him up and... well he's completely average. I just don't see that one.

Jul 02, 2010 11:44 AM
rating: 0
 
hyprvypr

Hughes has worse numbers then all three. You should subscribe to the NY Post, not Baseball Prospectus.

Jul 04, 2010 14:57 PM
rating: 0
 
newsense

Magglio over Boesch, Swisher over Gardner -both are having great seasions with much better track records.

Also, Braun and Manny should be starting in the OF and you left them of entirely.

Jul 02, 2010 12:10 PM
rating: 0
 
RoastBeeph

If the braves get willing ham they might end the year with the most walks during a season any major league team has had in a decade.

Jul 02, 2010 12:32 PM
rating: 0
 
billgoofnow

It's a wonder that these authors ever feel up to writing a piece like this because so many of the replies are scribed with such angry and accusatory tones. So you don't agree on some of the players he selected -no surprise there... Just chill out and say why you think someone else should be there rather than attack the guy for his selections. It's an opinion piece for goodness sake...

Jul 02, 2010 14:22 PM
rating: 2
 
Jquinton82

How exactly does Phil Hughes not get a nod in the middle of a breakout season like this? I realize he's a Yankee, but I feel like if he was on any other team 1) we'd be talking alot more about his year and 2) he'd be on this list

Jul 02, 2010 16:38 PM
rating: 0
 
Drew Miller

I feel similarly about Youkilis.

Jul 03, 2010 04:52 AM
rating: 0
 
hyprvypr

Players get talked about MORE when they're on the Yankees, not less. Are you serious?

Jul 04, 2010 14:54 PM
rating: 0
 
Drew Miller

I think what he means is that Hughes would get more press if he weren't surrounded by the biggest names in baseball.

Jul 05, 2010 11:30 AM
rating: 0
 
FLeghorn

That's a good point. I, myself, am often curious as to why the New York Yankees get so little press coverage. If I have to turn on ESPN once more and see another Cincinnati Reds or Colorado Rockies game, I'm gonna scream.
That being said, Hughes has had a very good season, both for the Bombers and my fantasy team. Unfortunately, my team's success doesn't match the Yanks. I would wager that, if this was Joba instead of Hughes, there'd be a lot more press about it. The MSM seemed fascinated by Chamberlin.

Jul 02, 2010 17:24 PM
rating: 3
 
awayish

Shortstop: Derek Jeter, Yankees. The production is matching the intangibles.

Ouch!

Jul 02, 2010 19:50 PM
rating: 0
 
John Douglass

"leaning on BP metrics to help make the selections"

Please to indicate which one of those BP metrics indicates that Gonzalez should start at 1B over Pujols for the NL.

Jul 03, 2010 07:40 AM
rating: 0
 
wrigleyboy

He apparently selected Torres for defense. And John, Gonzalez has 3.1 wins above replacement to 3.0 for Jeter. His choices conform very closely to the WAR on Fangraphs. Since I don't vote just on the current year, I didn't so much in my voting.

Jul 03, 2010 12:55 PM
rating: 0
 
John Douglass

Alex Gonzalez isn't a concern of mine. Adrian Gonzalez--a great player but certainly not a better one than Pujols in this or any other year--being labelled as worthy of starting the All-Star game based on BP metrics, all of which point to Pujols, is my concern.

Jul 05, 2010 11:47 AM
rating: 0
 
twinkies25

Stephen Strasburg deserves a spot, does he?

Jul 03, 2010 18:07 PM
rating: 0
 
hyprvypr

A lot of hype but too new. Maybe if he'd been up all three months and sporting numbers double his current ones. It's hard to put a guy with 6-7 starts into the All-Star game. It's not as though he's thrown 5 shutouts or something.

Jul 04, 2010 15:04 PM
rating: 0
 
greendrummer

you still need a backup AL 2B because Wiggington is incorrectly listed here - he is 1B.
whether he's an AllStar or not is another story...

Jul 04, 2010 01:05 AM
rating: 0
 
wrigleyboy

Wiggington has 265 innings at first with 30 starts, and 290 at second with 35 starts.

Jul 04, 2010 02:22 AM
rating: 0
 
Richard Bergstrom

"Holliday has proven to be worth the $120 million so far."

One season never proves the worth of $120 million.

Jul 04, 2010 01:20 AM
rating: 0
 
awayish

Yea, maybe that's why he said so far.

Jul 04, 2010 21:46 PM
rating: 0
 
Richard Bergstrom

Eh, just seems kind of loose to me. Half a season's worth of at-bats doesn't prove that he is worth the contract, even with a "so far" tag. As a comparison, Kevin Brown had a good first and second season with the Dodgers, and his contract was still considered a bust.

Jul 05, 2010 13:53 PM
rating: 0
 
hyprvypr

I'm guessing you left Braun off the list by accident. It's impossible to have an All-Star team with Angel Pagan(lol) and Andres Torres and no Ryan Braun. This one is inexcusible.

Jul 04, 2010 15:07 PM
rating: 0
 
denniswguerra

I am not a fan of "one-hit wonders" or "3 month wonders" and think all stars are those that would be picked to play a 162 game season. Some positions are pretty much set. I have not seen anything this season to make me change my mind about Pujols, Utley, Braun, Ramirez, Mauer, Jeter, Rodriguez, Ichiro. Some positions are toss-ups between a couple of players and the first half can decide (Cano/Pedroia/Kinsler..McCann/Molina). There are some positions without a clear-cut dominant player so again the current year can define like NL CF and RF and AL CF. Someone coming out of nowhere should be a slam dunk, no doubt about it player and there are very few of those. Check out some of the Rookies of the Year for confirmation. Loss of all star status should be based on more than a bad first half. Would you really take Gonzalez over Pujols and Beltre over A-Rod, Longoria or Young if you started a team tomorrow to play a season?

Jul 04, 2010 17:37 PM
rating: 0
 
Andy

I can't believe you missed Omar Infante. He is clearly the best player in the NL and is deserving of being on every possible All Star team.

Jul 04, 2010 23:48 PM
rating: 0
 
hyprvypr

Girardi left Felix off the All-Star team? What a jackass, he was the second best pitcher in the AL last year and about the 3rd-5th this year...

Disgraceful Yankees and their coach... Should be penalized.

Jul 05, 2010 19:21 PM
rating: 0
 
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