Following through on a pledge he made Friday, San Francisco Giants manager Bruce Bochy selected closer Sergio Romo as an injury replacement to the National League All-Star roster on Sunday.
Pirates pitcher Jeff Locke and Nationals pitcher Jordan Zimmermann announced that they would not participate in Tuesday’s game in New York because of minor injuries.
Bochy replaced Locke and Zimmermann with Romo and Pirates reliever Mark Melancon.
That give the Giants four players on the All-Star roster with Romo joining reserves Buster Posey, Marco Scutaro and Madison Bumgarner.
Bochy will need to make at least two more replacement selections. Cardinals pitcher Adam Wainwright is scheduled to start Sunday night’s game against the Cubs, making him ineligible to play in the All-Star game. However, Bochy cannot announce a replacement for Wainwright until he actually throw a pitch in the game, which doesn’t start until 5 p.m. Pacific Time. I would expect Bochy to turn another Cardinal to replace Wainwright. That’s what he did with Locke.
Two possible Redbird options are starting pitcher Shelby Miller or reliever Edward Mujica.
Braves first baseman Freddie Freeman, who on Thursday won the All-Star Final Vote as the final addition to the roster, suffered a jammed thumb on Saturday and will not play Tuesday.
Freeman beat out the Dodgers’ Yasiel Puig, Giants’ Hunter Pence, Nationals’ Ian Desmond and Dodgers’ Adrian Gonzalez in fan voting, in that order.
Considering Puig, the runner-up in fan voting, has been sidelined this weekend by a sore shoulder, Bochy may select Pence as a replacement for Freeman. Pence finished third in Final Vote voting.
However, San Jose Mercury’s Alex Pavlovic reported that Bochy is leaning to a third catcher to replace Freeman. If that’s the case, the Rockies’ Wilin Rosario would be at the top of the list.
The San Francisco Giants went from four All-Star starters in 2012 to none in 2013.
But the Giants will be represented by three players in this year’s Midsummer’s Classic in New York as reserves — Buster Posey, Marco Scutaro and Madison Bumgarner.
Here are the NL starters for the July 16 game at Citi Field as voted upon by the fans.
- C – Yadier Molina, Cardinals
- 1B – Joey Votto, Reds
- 2B – Brandon Phillips, Reds
- SS – Troy Tulowitzki, Rockies
- 3B – David Wright, Mets
- OF – Carlos Beltran, Cardinals
- OF – Carlos Gonzalez, Rockies
- OF – Bryce Harper, Nationals
Thirteen pitchers were selected to the team, 8 by a players vote, five more by manager Bruce Bochy (although we don’t know which pitcher were picked by players, and which were picked by Bochy. Although we can tell you than the five pitchers Bochy selected were starting pitchers, as players were required to vote for three relievers and there are only three relievers on the roster)
- Matt Harvey, Mets
- Clayton Kershaw, Dodgers
- Patrick Corbin, Diamondbacks
- Adam Wainwright, Cardinals
- Jordan Zimmermann, Nationals
- Carlos Lee, Phillies
- Jose Fernandez, Marlins
- Travis Wood, Cubs
- Madison Bumgarner, Giants
- Jeff Locke, Pirates
- Craig Kimbrel, Braves
- Jason Grilli, Pirates
- Aroldis Chapman, Reds
That left 12 reserve position players, eight of which were voted on by the players, four were picked by Bochy, although again we don’t who picked whom. But we can assume that Bochy picked Goldschmidt or Craig (probably Craig), Scutaro or Carpenter (probably Scutaro), Segura or Cabreraj (probably Cabrera) and one of the four outfielders (probably Brown)
- 1B Paul Goldschimdt, Diamondbacks
- 1B Allen Craig, Cardinals
- 2B Marco Scutaro, Giants
- 2B Matt Carpenter, Cardinals
- SS Jean Segura, Brewers
- SS Evreth Cabrera, Padres
- 3B Pedro Alvarez, Pirates
- C Buster Posey, Giants
- OF Andrew McCutcheon
- OF Michael Cuddyer, Rockies
- OF Carlos Gomez, Brewers
- OF Domonic Brown, Phillies
OK, so how did MoreSplashHits did from our projections posted earlier this week.
Well, pretty darn good. Of the 33 players we projected to make the All-Star team, 29 actually made it.
One miss we had no control over, and that’s because of the fan vote. We had Justin Upton, because Upton was No. 3 in voting when we made our post. Harper passed Upton in the closing days of voting. We did say that neither player would make the team if he did not win the vote, and Upton did not make the team.
Our other misses were….
SP TRAVIS WOOD, CUBS: Wood is a solid pick to represent the Cubs with 5-6 record and a 2.69 ERA in 17 starts. We went with a reliever, Kevin Gregg, who is 2-1 with 1.59 ERA with 14 saves in 15 opportunities in 29 appearances.
SP MADISON BUMGARNER: Bumgarner has been the Giants’ best starting pitcher this year. He is 8-5 with 3.08 ERA in 17 starts. Bumgarner actually ranks 15th in the NL in ERA among starters. To put him on the team, Bochy had to leap from pitchers like Mike Leake (2.73), Shelby Miller (2.80), Hyun-Jin Ryu (2.82) and Mat Latos (3.03). We went with Sergio Romo as Bochy’s pitching pick from the Giants. At 3-3 with a 2.32 ERA and 19 saves, we felt that would be easier to defend than Bumgarner.
2B MATT CARPENTER: This was a logistics decision. We thought Bochy would go with a third catcher, so we had Wilin Rosario of the Rockies on the team. Going with two catchers means that Molina likely will catch five innings, then Posey will come in to catch the last four innings. But what happens if the game goes in extra innings. Bochy surely doesn’t want Posey catching more innings than necessary. Now, it is likely that Troy Tulowitzki won’t play because he’s still on the DL. With two reserve shortstops (Segura and Cabrera) on the roster, Bochy could choose to replace Tulowitzki with another Rockies player — Rosario — and then he’ll have three catchers. As it is now, Carpenter earned a spot on the team that Rosario did not. Actually, we don’t know if Carpenter earned a spot through the players vote and Bochy picked Scutaro, or the other way around.
The 2013 All-Star voting is boiling down to the final hours. Balloting is down to online voting from now until 11:59 p.m. on Thursday, the Fourth of July.
Last year, during this period, there was a flood on votes cast. For example, Yadier Molina was the leading NL vote-getter when the most recent results were released Tuesday with almost 5.1 million. By the time the final surge of votes are counted, he may need more than 7 million votes to keep the title of leading vote-getter.
So a lot can still change. The All-Star teams will be announced on Saturday.
Still, MoreSplashHits is taking our best guess as to what the NL All-Star team might look like.
We’ll start with an assumption (a very shaky assumption at that) that the vote leaders won’t change in the final days of voting. But that at least serves as a starting point.
The position leaders we feel most likely will hold onto their leads and be voted All-Star starters are SS Troy Tulowitzki (although he’s injured and likely will be replaced) and OF Carlos Beltran.
We’ve added an “IF” section for those positions where the vote is close.
We’ve included their July 2 vote total, and lead over No. 2 vote-getter at their position.
- 1B – Joey Votto, Reds (3.62 million, +587K over Paul Goldschmidt)
- 2B – Brandon Phillips, Reds (3.41 million, +225K over Matt Carpenter)
- SS – Troy Tulowitzki, Rockies (4.07 million, +1.7M over Brandon Crawford)
- 3B – David Wright, Mets (4.45 million, +842K over Pablo Sandoval)
- C – Yadier Molina, Cardinals (5.09 million, +419K over Buster Posey)
- OF – Carlos Beltran, Cardinals (5.01 million)
- OF – Carlos Gonzalez, Rockies (2.93 million)
- OF – Justin Upton, Braves (2.92 million, +15K over Bryce Harper)
PLAYERS VOTES (16 players)
The players vote on eight pitchers (five starters, three relievers) and the eight backups at each position. So this is a prediction on who those players would be based on the aforementioned projected starters.
- SP – Matt Harvey, Mets
- SP – Clayton Kershaw, Dodgers
- SP – Patrick Corbin, Diamondbacks
- SP – Adam Wainwright, Cardinals
- SP – Jordan Zimmermann, Nationals
- RP – Craig Kimbrel, Braves
- RP – Jason Grilli, Pirates
- RP – Aroldis Chapman, Reds
- 1B – Paul Goldschmidt , Diamondbacks
- 2B – Marco Scutaro, Giants
- SS – Jean Segura, Brewers
- 3B – Pedro Alvarez, Pirates
- C – Buster Posey, Giants
- OF – Andrew McCutchen, Pirates
- OF – Michael Cuddyer , Rockies
- OF – Carlos Gomez , Brewers
When players vote, it’s often more about reputation than results. But I think the players will get this mostly right. The one reputation vote goes to Chapman. Results say better options could be Jonathan Papelbon of the Phillies, Edwin Mujica of the Cardinals or Rafael Soriano of the Nationals. But Chapman brings the heat. It’s not a bad pick. When Chapman is on, he’s filthy. The other tight vote goes to Scutaro. Results here say Matt Carpenter of the Cardinals is the better pick, if you base that off this year’s numbers. But if you go back to the second half of last year, then Scutaro is clearly deserving. When you add Scutaro’s postseason heroics and the fact he’s a 37-year-old veteran who has never made an All-Star team, Scutaro becomes a sentimental pick.
MANAGER PICKS (9 more)
This is where Bruce Bochy comes in. And it’s not just Bochy picking his nine favorite players. There are other factors, including making sure every team is represented and picking a third catcher.
- P – Cliff Lee, Phillies
- P – Jose Fernandez, Marlins (Marlins rep)
- P – Jeff Locke, Pirates
- P – Kevin Gregg, Cubs (Cubs rep)
- P – Sergio Romo, Giants
- BP – Wilin Rosario, Rockies
- BP – Everth Cabrera, Padres (Padres rep)
- BP – Dominic Brown, Phillies
- BP – Allen Craig, Cardinals
OK, first the team reps. For the Marlins, a month ago it may have been closer Steve Cichek. But his ERA is on the rise. And a nod to a 20-year-old rookie would be nice bonus for Marlins fans looking to the future. For the Cubs, the best position player candidate is OF Nate Schierholtz. No kidding! Schierholtz. But really it’s down to starting pitcher Jeff Samardzija and Gregg. Samardzija has a lot of K’s, but a losing record (5-7). Gregg has been great out of the pen. For the Padres, the two candidates are up the middle: Cabrera or rookie Jedd Gyroko. Both deserving to represent the Padres, but the Tulowitzki unlikely to play (opening a roster spot for the Nationals’ Ian Desmond), Cabrera seems like the smart choice. As for the rest, Lee and Locke are solid choices. Romo is the easiest Giants selection for Bochy to defend (and if you go back to second half of 2012 plus the postseason, it’s not a bad pick). Rosario would be the third catcher (always a must in an All-Star game), and sluggers Brown and Craig round out the team.
Bochy will get to select the five candidates for the fans to vote for the last roster spot. All of these five players are deserving. Carpenter could have been picked over Scutaro. Choo or Bruce over Brown. Freeman over Craig. Soriano over Chapman. I don’t see Bochy opening up a spot on this vote for Yasiel Puig (unless MLB makes him). Bochy loves veterans, and is unlikely to open a spot for a guy who has been up for four weeks. And frankly, we agree with that thinking.
- Matt Carpenter, Cardinals
- Shin-Soo Choo, Reds
- Freddie Freeman, Braves
- Jay Bruce, Reds
- Rafael Soriano, Nationals
NOW FOR THE IF’S
Votto, Wright and Phillips are good bets to hold onto their leads. But if by chance they end up losing the vote, they will win on the players vote. The same is true for Molina if Posey makes a late surge. If Carpenter pulls off the upset at second base, that could bump Scutaro into a manager’s pick, bumping either Brown or Craig off the team and onto the Final Five vote (bumping Soriano off Final Five). While Scutaro is battling back issues and mallet finger — meaning he could use the break — I think Bochy would select him anyway, then maybe just give him a pinch-hitting opportunity in the All-Star Game.
Upton holds a narrow lead over Bryce Harper for the final outfield spot. I don’t think either makes the team if they don’t win the voting. Upton got off to a torrid start, but has cooled WAY down since and is hitting below .250. Harper has just been activated after spening a month on the DL. Matt Holliday and McCutchen are within striking distance in the voting, and don’t count out Hunter Pence (in 7th in voting) if Giants fans get out the vote again.
What’s going on with the San Francisco Giants fans?
Are they depressed by the team’s recent hitting woes? Have they let the team’s string of injuries drag them down?
Or are they simply laying in the weeds to make another big last-minute surge in the polls like they did last year?
Whatever the explanation, they haven’t gotten out the vote so far. And if the voting for the All-Star Game ended today, here’s how many Giants would be in the starting lineup for the Midsummer’s Classic …
None. Nada. Zilch. A big fat goose eggs (and we are not talking about Pablo Sandoval).
David Wright of the Mets has surpassed Pablo Sandoval as the top vote-getter among third basemen, and Yadier Molina of the Cardinals has passed Buster Posey as the leader among NL catchers.
Molina, in fact, is the leading vote-getter among all NL players with almost 3.6 million votes. Oddly enough, Posey is the second-leading vote-getter for all NL players with a little more than 3.5 million votes.
Last year, Posey set the record for the most votes received by any player elected to the All-Star game with more than 7.6 million votes. A huge chunk of those votes came in the final week of balloting — all of which was done online — when Giants fans flooded the ballots to elect Posey, Melky Cabrera and Pablo Sandoval as NL all-star starters.
Voting for the 2013 All-Star Game will continue through July 4, so there’s plenty of time for another Giant surge of votes.
And it’s not like Giants fans aren’t voting. Four Giants are the No. 2 vote-getters at their positions.
In addition to Posey, Sandoval trails Wright at third base (2.92 million to 2.79 million), Marco Scutaro trails Brandon Phillips at second base (2.6 million to 2.27 million) and Brandon Crawford trails Troy Tulowitzki (3.1 million to 1.76 million). Additionally, Brandon Belt is fourth at first base (behind Joey Votto, Paul Goldschmidt and Allen Craig). In the outfield, Hunter Pence is 8th, Angel Pagan 10th and Gregor Blanco is 13th.
It’s hard to ignore that Cardinals fans are getting the vote out. There are only two teams that have players listed among the top five at every infield position and all three outfield candidates listed in the top 13 — the Giants and the Cardinals.
Allen Craig is No. 3 at first base, Matt Carpenter is No. 3 at second base, Pete Freakin Kozma is No. 4 at shortstop, David Freese is third at third base, Molina leads at catcher and in the outfielder, Carlos Betran is No. 1, Matt Holliday is No. 6 and Jon Jay is No. 12.
San Francisco Giants fans should be ashamed.
The first results of All-Star voting was released Tuesday and two Giants — catcher Buster Posey and third baseman Pablo Sandoval — lead their position in NL voting.
After last season, when the Giants had three players voted as NL All-Star starters and several other less-than-deserving players finish high at their position in the voting, the first release of numbers may be a surprise.
Only two Giants lead their positions? Well, actually, several Giants are faring well in early voting in 2013. Three players — Marco Scutaro, Brandon Crawford and Brandon Belt — are second at their position. Hunter Pence is sixth among outfielders.
Buster Posey is the leading vote-getter among NL players, by almost 100,000 votes over Atlanta’s B.J. Upton.
Generally, the biggest movement in vote totals comes in the final week of ballotting. But so far in the early going, the Giants are in good position.
Here are the leaders at each position and where the Giants currently stand.
1. Buster Posey, Giants, 1,275,956
2. Yadier Molina, Cardinals 938,911
1. Joey Votto, Reds, 1, 044,742
2. Brandon Belt, Giants, 513,371
1. Brandon Phillips, Reds, 1,019,240
2. Marco Scutaro, Giants, 801,754
1. Troy Tulowitzki, Rockies, 1,025,844
2. Brandon Crawford, Giants, 668,140
1. Pablo Sandoval, Giants, 1,094,475
2. David Wright, Mets, 967,299
1. Justin Upton, Braves, 1,184,249
2. Bryce Harper, Nationals, 1,182,532
3. Ryan Braun, Brewers, 945,665
6, Hunter Pence, Giants, 624,972
8, Angel Pagan, Giants, 572,400
11. Gregor Blanco, Giants, 475,662
For all the belly-aching by fans across the country and the rabid tweets from Mets president Sandy Alderson, the fans and Tony LaRussa got it right in putting four San Francisco Giants into the starting lineup of the NL All-Star team.
The Giants’ stat lines were pretty good
- CF Melky Cabrera: 2 for 3, home run, two runs, two RBI.
- C Buster Posey: 0 for 2, walk, run, five scoreless innings caught
- 3B Pablo Sandoval: 1 for 2, triple, run, 3 RBI
- P Matt Cain: 2 IP, 1 hit, 0 runs, 0 BB, 1 strikeout, win.
If you missed the start of the game, you missed a thrilling first inning.
After Carlos Gonzalez struck out to open the game, Cabrera singled to left and scored on Ryan Braun’s double.
After Joey Votto struck out, Carlos Beltran and Buster Posey drew walks.
Braun, Beltran and Posey all scored when Sandoval dug out a Verlander curveball and hit it off the wall just inside the right-field foul pole for a triple.
I don’t get many triples,” the Panda said. “We had some fun with that in the dugout.”
Just like that, it was 5-0 National League.
Cabrera grounded out to second in the second. Posey popped out to catcher Mike Napoli in the third and Pablo Sandoval flied to center in the fourth.
But Cabrera capped the exciting night for the Giants by hammering a two-run homer to left off the Rangers’ Matt Harrison, making it 8-0.
That home run made Cabrera the first Giant to be selected All-Star Game MVP since Bobby Bonds in 1973 in a game also played in Kansas City.
“I didn’t come to win an MVP. That’s just a surprise,” he said. “The same opportunity that Kansas City gave me last year is the same opportunity that San Francisco is giving me every day to showcase my talent. Again, I’m just very thankful for the fans that voted for me to come here.”
He can also thank Jose Bautista for the MVP trophy and the Camaro that came with it.
Bautista made a nifty sliding catch on a looper off the bat of Braun in the second inning. If Bautista doesn’t make that play, Braun finishes the night 3 for 3 with a single, double and triple … and likely with an MVP honor.
After all the Giants left the game, the All-Star Game went quiet.
Cain earned the victory, becoming the first Giants pitcher to earn an All-Star win since Vida Blue in 1981.
“For those guys to go out and score five runs in the first inning was definitely a little more relaxing for me,” he said. “But I still tried to stay focused.”
Giants All-Star MVPs
- Willie Mays, 1963 (Cleveland)
- Juan Marichal, 1965 (Minnesota)
- Willie Mays, 1968 (Houston)
- Willie McCovey, 1969 (Washington)
- Bobby Bonds, 1973 (Kansas City)
- Melky Cabrera, 2012 (Kansas City)
Giants All-Star winning pitchers
- Sal Maglie, 1951 (Detroit)
- Johnny Antonelli, 1959 (Pittsburgh)
- Stu Miller, 1961 (San Francisco)
- Juan Marichal, 1962 (Washington)
- Juan Marichal, 1964 (New York-Shea)
- Gaylord Perry, 1966 (St. Louis)
- Vida Blue, 1981 (Cleveland)
For the second time this season, Matt Cain has helped establish a Giants franchise first.
Last month, Cain became the first pitcher in Giants history to throw a perfect game.
On Tuesday in Kansas City, he will become seventh Giants pitcher to start the All-Star Game for the National League.
Cain’s selection as the NL starter by manager Tony LaRussa gives the Giants four All-Star starters for the first time in franchise history.
In short, if you’re a Giants fan, be sure to tune into the All-Star Game early.
Cain is joined on the starting lineup by catcher Buster Posey, third baseman Pablo Sandoval and outfielder Melky Cabrera, all voted starters in fan voting.
This is Cain’s third All-Star selection, but it will be the first time he’ll actually get to pitch in the game. Cain was not used in 2009 by manager Charlie Manuel, and last season he pitched the Sunday before the All-Star Game, making him ineligible to pitch in the midsummer’s classic.
Let’s hope Cain has better success than other recent Giants pitchers have fared as All-Star Game starters. In their first three All-Star starts, Giants pitchers (Carl Hubbell and Juan Marichal twice) did not allow a run, giving up a combined four hits in nine innings. Marichal was the All-Star MVP in 1965.
But since then, three of the last four Giants All-Star starters were tagged for at least two runs, although none of them ending up as the losing pitcher.
Here’s a look at how Giants have fare as the NL starting pitcher:
- 1934, Carl Hubbell 3 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 2 BB, 6 K
- 1965, Juan Marichal, 3 IP, 1 H, 0 R
- 1967, Juan Marichal, 3 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 3 K
- 1978, Vida Blue, 3 IP, 5 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 1 BB, 2 K
- 1989, Rick Reuschel, 1 IP, 3 H, 2 R, 2 ER
- 2003, Jason Schmidt, 2 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 3 K
- 2009, Tim Lincecum, 2 IP, 2 H, 2 R, 1 ER, 1 K
During the All-Star Selection Show Sunday, one of the panelists disagreed with the election of Pablo Sandoval over David Wright, even going so far as to scold Mets fans for not getting out the vote for their man.
But you can’t blame Mets fans. When it came to All-Star votes — especially online — San Francisco Giants fans belted a grand slam.
The final all-star vote in the NL was knocked black and orange.
Buster Posey went from having 3.3 million votes and leading Yadier Molina by a little more than 200,000 votes last week to finishing with an NL-record 7.6 million votes. Posey was the leading vote-getter in the National League. He outdistanced Molina by more than 2.5 million votes.
Last week, Melky Cabrera lost as the No. 3 vote-getter in the outfield to Ryan Braun. In the final tally, Cabrera was the top vote-getter among NL outfielders. Cabrera collected 7.5 million votes, a little less than 100,000 votes behind Posey. Cabrera finished more than 1 million votes ahead of No. 2 outfielder Carlos Beltran.
Sandoval went from trailing Wright by more than 400,000 votes to beating Wright by more than 1.6 million votes. Sandoval collected 5.7 million votes.
Oh, and it didn’t stop there. Two other Giants — 1B Brandon Belt and SS Brandon Crawford — finished second in voting at their respective positions. Belt finished more than 3 million votes behind the Reds’ Joey Votto. However, Crawford missed being voted the starting NL shortstop by a little more than 306,000 votes.
Outfielder Angel Pagan finished fifth among outfielders (4.5 million). Aubrey Huff was 14th (1.9 million). Freddy Sanchez, who has not played a big-league game in more than a year, finished fourth among second baseman (2.289 million votes).
It’s the first time since 2001 that the Giants have had three players voted All-Star starters (Barry Bonds, Jeff Kent and Rich Aurilia). Coincidentally, Bonds, Kent and Aurilia are expected at AT&T Park Sunday as the Giants commemorate the 10-year anniversary of the 2002 NL championship squad.
Congrats to Buster, the Melkman and the Panda, and also to Matt Cain, who was named to the All-Star team.
Here is the NL All-Star team:
C – Buster Posey, Giants; 1B – Joey Votto, Reds; 2B – Dan Uggla, Braves; SS – Rafael Furcal, Cardinals; 3B – Pablo Sandoval, Giants; OF – Matt Kemp, Dodgers; OF – Carlos Beltran, Cardinals; OF – Melky Cabrera, Giants.
Clayton Kershaw, Dodgers; Craig Kimbrel, Braves; Aroldis Chapman, Reds; Cole Hamels, Phillies; Jonathan Papelbon, Phillies; Wade Miley, Diamondbacks; Gio Gonzalez, Nationals; Stephen Strasburg, Nationals; R.A. Dickey, Mets; Matt Cain, Giants; Lance Lynn, Cardinals; Joel Hanrahan, Pirates; Huston Street, Padres
1B Bryan Lahair, Cubs; 2B Jose Altuve, Astros; SS Starlin Castro, Cubs; SS Ian Desmond, Nationals; 3B David Wright, Mets; C Carlos Ruiz, Phillies; C Yadier Molina, Cardinals; OF Jay Bruce, Reds; OF Carlos Gonzalez, Rockies; OF Ryan Braun, Brewers; OF Giancarlo Stanton, Marlins; OF Andrew McCutchen.
The All-Star starters and reserves will be announced on Sunday at 10 a.m. on TBS. So that gives us a couple of days to consider who should be on the team.
So if MoreSplashHits were in Tony LaRussa’s position — and in a way we are; neither one of us is managing in the bigs this season — this is how we could draw up the National League All-Star.
We’re going to start with assuming that all the players who were leading in All-Star voting as of Tuesday will hold on to win. That’s no sure thing because more than 11 million online votes were cast, so close balloting could easily win.
But we’ll use Tuesday’s voting as a starting point, and we’ll add some caveats later. We’re not saying this SHOULD be the starting lineup. Actually, I guess we are. Because we’ve always believed if players get the votes, they should start. That’s the way the All-Star Game works.
The National League selects 25 reserves (including pitchers). We’re going with the past formula of selecting 12 position players and 13 pitchers.
(Based on leaders in most recent balloting results)
- 1B — Joey Votto, Reds
- 2B — Dan Uggla, Braves
- SS — Rafael Furcal, Cardinals
- 3B — David Wright, Mets
- C — Buster Posey, Giants
- OF — Matt Kemp, Dodgers
- OF — Carlos Beltran, Cardinals
- OF — Ryan Braun, Brewers
RESERVE POSITION PLAYERS
1B — Paul Goldschmidt, Diamondbacks (11 HR, 35 RBI, .299) — First base is a little lean in the NL, but Goldschmidt is clearly the best of what is left. Heating up after a slow start.
2B — Jose Altuve, Astros (5 HR, 23 RBI, .309) — Altuve will be the Astros’ lone representative on this team. But that’s not why is on the list. He’s earned his spot, leading all 2B in hitting.
2B — Aaron Hill, Diamondbacks (11 HR, 38 RBI, .302) — Hill made a big late push to make his way on this team. But two cycles in one season is good enough for us.
SS — Starlin Castro, Cubs (6 HR, 39 RBI, .297) — Whenever he remembers how many outs there are, Castro has been the best shortstop in the league.
3B — Chase Headley, Padres (8 HR, 38 RBI, .272) — Headley having decent, but not necessarily All-Star season. But the Padres need a representative and we can’t find another.
C — Carlos Ruiz, Phillies (11 HR, 43 RBI, .356) — Chooch is a no-brainer.
C — Yadier Molina, Cardinals (12 HR, 44 RBI, .311) — St. Louis fans are grumpy about Molina being behind Posey in the voting. But their seasons are VERY similar and Posey plays in the tougher park. Still, Molina’s earned a spot.
OF — Melky Cabrera, Giants (7 HR, 38 RBI, .355) — The Melkman is another no-brainer, on his way to another 200-hit season.
OF — Andrew McCutchen, Pirates (15 HR, 51 RBI, .344) — The Pirates knew what they were doing when they locked up McCutchen long term.
OF — Michael Bourn, Braves (7 HR, 28 RBI, .306) — Bourn is a run-scoring machine atop the Braves’ lineup.
OF — Carlos Gonzalez, Rockies (17 HR, 58 RBI, .338) — His home/road splits aren’t great, but his overall numbers are clearly All-Star worthy.
OF — Giancarlo Stanton, Marlins (17 HR, 47 RBI, .278) — The Marlins need a representative and the power-hitting Stanton is certainly deserving.
SP — R.A. Dickey, Mets (11-1, 2.31 ERA) — Really can’t deny Dickey a spot.
SP — Matt Cain, Giants (9-2, 2.27 ERA) — Mr. Perfecto definitely makes the team.
SP — James McDonald, Pirates (7-3, 2.44 ERA) — Do you think the Dodgers want him back?
SP — Stephen Strasburg, Nationals (9-2, 2.60 ERA) — Got to take the NL’s K leader.
SP — Gio Gonzalez, Nationals (10-3, 2.78 ERA) — Better earlier than lately but still good enough to make team.
SP — Johnny Cueto, Reds (9-4, 2.26 ERA) — Cueto has finally figured it out. Been great since last All-Star break.
SP — Ryan Vogelsong, Giants (7-3, 2.23 ERA) — Made All-Star team last year because his skipper was manager. Now, he makes it no matter who is managing.
SP — Wade Miley, Diamondbacks (9-3, 2.19 ERA) — Not in the rotation to start the season, now he’s the Snakes’ ace
SP — Clayton Kershaw, Dodgers (5-4, 2.74 ERA) — More fallible this year than last, but still really good. Record is not his fault. Basically, this boiled down to the better Dodgers: Kershaw or Chris Capuano. Over past 12 months, Kershaw has better resume.
RP — Craig Kimbrel, Braves (0-1, 1.55 ERA, 22 saves) — League-leader in saves.
RP — Sergio Romo, Giants (2-1, 0.83 ERA, 4 saves) — Sexy pick is to select teammate Santiago Casilla, but Romo has been flat-out filthy. Or should I say Romolicious.
RP — Joel Hanrahan, Pirates (3-0, 2.10 ERA, 20 saves) — Big part of the Pirates’ surprise season.
RP — Aroldis Chapman, Reds (4-4, 1.98 ERA, 9 saves) — Chapman brings the big heat and tiny WHIP (0.74)
A quick look at close votes
- OF: If Cabrera beats out Braun, Braun still makes roster as Brewers’ representative.
- C: If Molina beats Posey, Posey still makes the team as a reserve. Gotta have three catchers.
- 3B: If Pablo Sandoval beats out Wright, Wright makes the team as a reserve. However, that would cost Aaron Hill his spot in a tough-luck decision.