Which Red Sox Position Players Deserve All-Star Appearances?
Based on the current voting results from June 11th, only one Red Sox player is slated to start the All-Star game, DH David Ortiz. In fact the only other player in the top 5 at their position is Dustin Pedroia, who is 3rd among AL second basemen.
We can all agree that the fan voting in general is flawed but which Red Sox position players should be considered? Let’s go position by position.
1B. Adrian Gonzalez. Gonzalez is possibly the most talented first baseman in the league. Not only that but he’s even played right field recently. Does he deserve to be an All-Star? As of today Gonzalez is 6th among AL 1st basemen in batting average with .267. With 5 home runs Gonzalez is 14th among AL first basemen. RBI? 6th with 35. OBP, SLUG, and OPS are all 9th among AL 1st basemen. With 22 doubles, Gonzalez leads all of the AL (tied with Ian Kinsler). Congrats.
Prognosis: Adrian Gonzalez does not deserve to be an All-Star in 2012.
2B. Dustin Pedroia. With a .275 average, Pedroia is 4th among AL 2nd basemen. With 5 home runs he’s 6th. 6th in RBI as well with 25. His OBP is .333, which is 5th. A .411 slugging % is 4th in the AL as is his .744 OPS. Pedroia has as many runs scored (33) as Dustin Ackley, 2nd baseman for Seattle who have the 12th best (out of 14) runs scored in the AL. They are tied with Kelly Johnson for 4th.
Prognosis: Dustin Pedroia does not deserve to be an All-Star in 2012.
3B. Kevin Youkilis or Will Middlebrooks. Do I need to get into the numbers? Youkilis doesn’t deserve to be an all-star. Middlebrooks, although we love what he’s done, he hasn’t been up and contributing long enough to be considered an all-star. The good news is that Middlebrooks is in the top 10 in both homeruns and RBI among AL 3rd basemen despite only having 124 at bats.
Prognosis: Neither Kevin Youkilis or Will Middlebrooks deserve to be an All-Star in 2012.
SS. Mike Aviles. With a .263 average Aviles is 6th among AL shortstops. With 8 home runs Aviles is 2nd in home runs. JJ Hardy has 11, but Aviles beats him in doubles, RBI, and average. With 37 RBI, Aviles leads all AL SS. Aviles is 9 ahead of Hardy who is in 2nd place. Aviles is 2nd in doubles to Asdrubal Cabrera with 15. A .282 OBP leaves Aviles 9th in the AL. Aviles is 4th in SLUG% and 7th in OPS. Mike’s 7 stolen bases are 5th among AL shortstops.
Prognosis: I believe that Mike Aviles should be the backup shortstop to Derek Jeter in the All-Star in 2012 game. Although, Asdrubal Cabrera deserves to make the team as well.
C. Jarrod Saltalamacchia. Salty is tied for 1st among AL catchers with 11 homeruns. Unfortunately, A.J. Pierzynski, who also has 11, is beating Salty in most other categories. Salty has 30 RBI, which is 4th among catchers. Unfortunately again, Joe Mauer is beating him in RBI and is beating Salty in a bunch of categories. Salty doesn’t have enough at bats but would be 2nd with a .525 SLUG, the only one higher is Kelly Shoppach. Four catchers would have a higher OPS.
Prognosis: Mauer deserves to start this year and Pierzynski should backup. If the AL carries 3 catchers, the 3rd should be Saltalamacchia. Matt Wieters is right on his tail.
OF. No one! Here’s the top OF in Boston for each category. None have enough ABs to qualify for .AVG, .OBP, .SLG, or .OPS. In home runs Cody Ross’ 8 are 15th. McDonald and Nava each have 2 and are ranked 44th. Ross’ 28 RBI are 15th. Nava ranks 32nd with 19, and Sweeney is 34th with 13. Sweeney has 17th doubles for 4th among AL outfielder Nava is 15th with 12. Ross has 9 and McDonald has 6. Runs scored, Ross is 27th with 24. Ross and Sweeney have 19. In stolen bases, Podsednik is 24th with 4 and Nava has 2.
Prognosis: Sadly, Cody Ross has been the Red Sox best outfielder this year. No Red Sox outfielder deserves to be an All-Star in 2012. However, Ellsbury could be all-star worthy based on last year, but will we even see him before the game?
DH. David Ortiz. This is a two player race. Ortiz and Encarnacion. David Ortiz leads every offensive category for DHs, except Encarnacion leads in HR, RBI, and SB but besides SB, they are very close.
Prognosis: David Ortiz deserves to start in the 2012 All-Star game.
After looking at these stats, the fans seem to be right. Ortiz should be the only All-Star starter from the Red Sox. Salty and Aviles should both be considered as bench players. Do you believe that? From this team full of high paid players Ortiz, Salty, and Aviles are the ones who deserve to be honored at the midsummer classic.