Tuesday, June 30, 2009

All Star Picks (AL today, NL coming tomorrow)

Inspired by my buddy Jordo (pictured above in his Under Armor gear) over at Rangers and Seinfeld, I decided to give my picks for the 2009 All Star Game.

American League

C, Joe Mauer: Unquestionably the best catcher in baseball, Mr. Sideburns missed the first month of the season but leads all backstops in virtually every major category, highlighted by his .459 OBP. Although it pains me to say, that's early 2000s Bonds-ian.
1B, Mark Teixeira: Probably the most difficult position in which to pick a starter, first base is stacked with talent this season. Of the 35 players in the AL with 40+ RBIs, 10 are first basemen. Although the power numbers are bunched at the top with Tex, Carlos Pena and Victor Martinez all having similar numbers, I give the nod to the better defensemen (it doesn't hurt the situation that he's a Yankee).
2B, Aaron Hill: Not a common name among the likes of Dustin Pedroia, Robinson Cano and Ian Kinsler, but he's earned it in 2009. Leading all second sackers in the triple crown categories and jump-starting the Toronto offense (5th in the bigs) will get you noticed.
SS, Derek Jeter: Obviously I'm going with my boy - I used to have a blog named after him for Pete's sake. This season he has quieted doubters who said he was getting old by pacing AL shortstops in average, OBP and jump-throws. With 17 steals through the first three months of the season, he's on pace for a career high of 38.
3B, Evan Longoria: Did you know Scott Rolen is batting .332? Me neither, but he still can't shake a stick at Longoria who is batting over .300 with 16 HR and 63 RBI. The Tampa Bay third baseman has cooled off considerably after batting .322 with 13 long-balls and 55 RBI through May, he had just three HR and eight RBI in June while batting a weak .236. It didn't effect the play of the Rays, though, as they went 18-7 to get back in contention for the AL (B)East.
OF, Ichiro: He's batting .372 - that's 40 POINTS higher than second place, the aforementioned Scott Rolen. Too bad that his team is second from the bottom of the bigs in the runs scored, so he has only touched home 37 times so far. Regardless of his tough other stats, his hits, average and outfield gun, he gets my nod.
OF, Jason Bay: He's making the Sawx tick. With 69 RBIs, he has 13 more than any other OF and leads the AL. The quiet Canadian has gone yard more than any of his cohorts and has an OBP almost 100 points higher than his average.
OF, Torii Hunter: It was a toughie leaving off Carl Crawford, who with 40 steals already, is on pace to swipe 83 bags in 2009. It's been over two decades since anyone stole that many bases (1988, Vince Coleman and Rickey Henderson). Enough about him, this is about the resurgent Hunter, who is well on his way to a vintage season, the kind he used to put up consistently in Minny. Good for him.
SP, Zach Greinke: Had him on my fantasy team last year, should have kept him. The 25-year-old ace has come a long way from leading the AL in losses in 2005. Greinke didn't give up an earned run until his fifth start and his ERA didn't go over 1.00 until his 11th start. He is on his way to a Cy Young in 2009 and a closet full of them over the next decade.


1 comment:

  1. Although I didn't pick 'em, I like Hill, Longoria and Ichiro. Nice commentary.