There’s a formula to predicting the All-Star rosters each year. Aside from taking the starters who were voted in, and taking one guy from each team, there are a few other factors that most people tend to forget. The main one is how the All-Stars are selected. After fan voting comes player and manager voting. Most people seem to forget that the players themselves have a say in all of this. And based on historical trend the players seem to vote for the guys that are the scariest to face, despite the statistics.
So when the rosters are revealed there will be a lot of backlash towards certain guys who don’t have good enough statistics to be there. There’s a good chance that this guy was chosen by the players. Although Albert Pujols statistically hasn’t been good enough to make this All-Star team, don’t be shocked if he’s on it. And if he is on it, it’s probably because the players and managers voted him in.
Another one that people tend to forget about are relievers and utility players. For the last few seasons MLB has told the All-Star managers to make sure there were non closing relievers and at least one utility guy on the team. That way the game includes every possible position that there is in the game. A few years ago people went nuts when Omar Infante was selected because of this rule. Nationals fans were surprised last year when Tyler Clippard was chosen as their All-Star over current closer Drew Storen.
These factors have to be taken in. With all of that being said, I’ve tried to accurately come up with a list on who should make the 2012 All-Star team. I have taken the leading vote getters from the last counting to be the starters. I have no control over them. I expect this list to be more accurate than most. This isn’t necessarily the guys that I would choose, but it’s who I think will be chosen.
Catcher- Mike Napoli (Texas)- He doesn’t deserve to be on the team statistically, but the fans in Texas proved to be better than the fans of the other team’s with candidates. Cough Cough Baltimore Cough Cough.
1st Base- Prince Fielder (Detroit)- He might not have the best numbers, but he certainly deserves to be on the team.
2nd Base- Robinson Cano (New York)- He’s the best 2B in the league.
3rd Base- Adrian Beltre (Texas)- He’s certainly in the top 2 at his position in the AL.
Shortstop- Derek Jeter (New York)- Can’t argue this one. I wish I could.
Outfield- Josh Hamilton (Texas)- Having a monster season.
Outfield- Curtis Granderson (New York)- Rightfully a starter.
Outfield- Jose Bautista (Toronto)- Doesn’t have the numbers to be a starter, but he deserves to be on the team. Another spot where an Oriole should be starting.
Designated Hitter- David Ortiz (Boston)- He just keeps on hitting.
Catcher- Joe Mauer (Minnesota)- The Twins’ only representative. Pierzynski gets snubbed.
Catcher- Matt Wieters (Baltimore)- Best defensive catcher in the league, solid offensive numbers, greatest of all time.
1st Base- Paul Konerko (Chicago)- He’s snubbed every year, but this year his numbers are just too good.
2nd Base- Jason Kipnis (Cleveland)- Having a breakout season. He’s a lock for this spot.
3rd Base- Miguel Cabrera (Detroit)- Probably the best hitting reserve in the game.
Shortstop- Asdrubal Cabrera (Cleveland)- He’s established himself as one of the best all around shortstops in the league.
Shortstop- Elvis Andrus (Texas)- Good player. Ron Washington picks reserves.
Outfield- Mike Trout (Los Angeles)- I list him first for a reason. AL MVP so far?
Outfield- Adam Jones (Baltimore)- Good enough this year to start. An elite player now.
Outfield- Mark Trumbo (Los Angeles)- Putting up better numbers than Pujols. He qualifies as that utility guy who can play at 1B and 3B as well.
Designated Hitter- Edwin Encarnacion (Toronto)- It’s hard to carry two DH’s, but Edwin deserves to be in.
Designated Hitter- Billy Butler (Kansas City)- They have to have a representative.
Starting Pitcher- Chris Sale (Chicago)- Did he come out of nowhere? Only if you didn’t follow my fantasy articles before the season started. Sale is deserving to start this game. Cy Young type numbers.
Starting Pitcher- Justin Verlander (Detroit)- The best pitcher in the game.
Starting Pitcher- Jered Weaver (Los Angeles)- Despite a DL stint, his numbers are still amongst the league leaders.
Starting Pitcher- Jake Peavy (Chicago)- Having a bounce back season.
Starting Pitcher- David Price (Tampa Bay)- Another strong season. Definitely an ace.
Starting Pitcher- CJ Wilson (Los Angeles)- Quietly having a very good year. He’s up there in everything.
Relief Pitcher- Fernando Rodney (Tampa Bay)- Somehow he seems to be the best closer in the AL this year.
Relief Pitcher- Jim Johnson (Baltimore)- He’s been nearly flawless.
Relief Pitcher- Ernesto Frieri (Los Angeles)- His ERA is under a 1.
Relief Pitcher- Joe Nathan (Texas)- You have to expect Ron Washington to take his own guy during a bounce back season.
Relief Pitcher- Charlie Furbush (Seattle)- Here is one of those relievers who isn’t a closer. Seattle has to have someone, and Furbush has deserving numbers. He has the best numbers Seattle has to offer.
Relief Pitcher- Ryan Cook (Oakland)- They have to have someone. Cook has been a good closer with a great start.
Catcher- Buster Posey (San Francisco)- Molina could edge him out as the starter. Both will be on the team.
1st Base- Joey Votto (Cincinnati)- There is nobody near him at his position. He’s far and beyond the best.
2nd Base- Dan Uggla (Atlanta)- Still has more power than any 2B in baseball.
3rd Base- David Wright (New York)- Deserves this spot after a nice bounce back year.
Shortstop- Rafael Furcal (St. Louis)- The Cardinals have a loyal fan base that always put an undeserving player in the game. I can’t justify Furcal because statistically he doesn’t belong.
Outfield- Carlos Beltran (St. Louis)- I’m leaving Matt Kemp out because he can’t play. He will be voted in. Beltran has had an amazing year so far.
Outfield- Ryan Braun (Milwaukee)- Typical Braun putting up typical Braun numbers.
Outfield- Andrew McCutchen (Pittsburgh)- Won’t be voted in, but he will be taking Matt Kemp’s spot as the selected starter. La Russa will need a good defensive center fielder to start. Plus McCutchen’s offensive numbers are deserving to start.
Designated Hitter- Carlos Gonzalez (Colorado)- La Russa will have to choose a DH. He will want Cargo’s bat in the lineup because of his numbers. McCutchen gets the defensive nod over him because of center field eligibility.
Catcher- Yadier Molina (St. Louis)- Best defensive catcher in the NL. He’s La Russa’s guy, and of course he deserves it.
Catcher- Carlos Ruiz (Philadelphia)- Having a surprising season. He’s probably the 2nd best defensive catcher behind Molina, plus he’s putting up big offensive numbers.
1st Base- Adam LaRoche (Washington)- 1B in the NL is weak. LaRoche has better numbers than Goldschmidt, Hart, and LaHair.
2nd Base- Brandon Phillips (Cincinnati)- A good all around player. You can’t keep him off.
2nd Base- Jose Altuve (Houston)- They have to have a representative. Altuve is their best player this year.
3rd Base- David Freese (St. Louis)- Hello, it’s La Russa. Who was his World Series MVP? That gives him the edge.
Shortstop- Starlin Castro (Chicago)- He’s the Cubs’ only representative, but not because they have to have one. He deserves it.
Outfield- Melky Cabrera (San Francisco)- Having a career year.
Outfield- Michael Bourn (Atlanta)- Having a quiet and highly productive year. He does everything. He even hits for power now.
Outfield- Matt Holliday (St. Louis)- He would be on the bubble if it weren’t for La Russa.
Outfield- Giancarlo Stanton (Miami)- Strongest player in the league. Expect him to win the Home Run Derby also.
Outfield- Martin Prado (Atlanta)- Here’s your utility guy. He’s hitting over .320 so he deserves it.
Starting Pitcher- RA Dickey (New York)- He’s this year’s biggest story in baseball. And now he starts the All-Star Game.
Starting Pitcher- Matt Cain (San Francisco)- Cy Young type numbers, plus a perfect game.
Starting Pitcher- Stephen Strasburg (Washington)- Time for the phenom to be in his first of many All-Star games.
Starting Pitcher- Gio Gonzalez (Washington)- The best rotation in baseball is represented by two guys.
Starting Pitcher- Johnny Cueto (Cincinnati)- This spot was really tough between Cueto and Bumgarner. Cueto has a much better ERA, so he’s in.
Starting Pitcher- Wade Miley (Arizona)- The competition for starting pitching in the NL is unbelievable. Miley gets in because Arizona has to have a player.
Starting Pitcher- Clayton Kershaw (Los Angeles)- With Kemp being out, Kershaw is a lock. Plus there is no way the players wont vote him in. He only has 5 wins, but he’s amazing.
Relief Pitcher- Aroldis Chapman (Cincinnati)- He went months without giving up a run. Yeah, he’s in.
Relief Pitcher- Craig Kimbrel (Atlanta)- The best closer in the game.
Relief Pitcher- Tyler Clippard (Washington)- A zero ERA since he’s been named the closer. Enough said.
Relief Pitcher- Huston Street (San Diego)- It’s really not fair that San Diego should have an All-Star this year. They have nobody. Street only has 19 innings pitched. But it’s either him or .270 hitting Headley, or Quentin who just started his season not long ago.
Relief Pitcher- Jonathan Papelbon (Philadelphia)- His ERA is a little high, but the players will vote him in. He has a nice amount of saves.