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Top Five MLB All Star Game Snubs (AL + NL)

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Tuesday July 9th, 2013

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Bernie Olshansky (Baseball Writer):

Every year there are a number of deserving guys who initially get snubbed out of the All Star Game.

For whatever reason, they just did not get picked. In this piece, I will cover the top five guys from each league that should have made the roster.

American League

5. Evan Longoria, Tampa Bay Rays

(AP Photo/Frank Franklin II)

(AP Photo/Frank Franklin II)

Longoria has All Star potential every year that he stays healthy. This year he has managed to do so, hitting .289 with 17 HR and 49 RBI. Sadly for him this year, he plays in the same league as a guy by the name of Miguel Cabrera, who has 90 RBI before the All Star Game.

Manny Machado also has a ridiculous amount of doubles, a higher average, and more RBI than Longoria. As sad as it is that Longoria did not get picked, I can understand why.

4. Howie Kendrick, Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim

a howie kendrick

Once again, it comes down to position for Kendrick. He is hitting .312 with 11 HR and 40 RBI, but those numbers are just incomparable to Robinson Cano, Dustin Pedroia, and Jason Kipnis.

3. Josh Donaldson, Oakland Athletics

a josh donaldson

By hitting .319 with 15 HR and 57 RBI, one would think Donaldson would at least be a reserve for the All Star Game. Manny Machado just edges him out in the RBI department and is slightly lower in the average category.

Donaldson has nine more homers. Looking at this, it seems A’s fans could have a legitimate beef with Donaldson not being selected. If someone is to get injured I see Donaldson being the first to be selected by Jim Leyland.

2. Grant Balfour, Oakland Athletics

the 35 year old native of South Wales just made his Spring Training Debut on Mar.21st.  Last year Balfour was 5th in the AL in Appearances and notched 24 Saves to take over the role as the Closer.  He just broke Dennis Eckersley's mark by nailing down his 41st straight Save and 23rd consecutive game in this campaign

the 35 year old native of South Wales just made his Spring Training Debut on Mar.21st. Last year Balfour was 5th in the AL in Appearances and notched 24 Saves to take over the role as the Closer. He just broke Dennis Eckersley’s mark by nailing down his 41st straight Save and 23rd consecutive game in this campaign

Balfour is a perfect 22/22 in saves this year. He has only one loss and a very good 1.82 ERA. He also has 35 K. Yes, I know there are some really good relievers in the AL, but Brett Cecil over Balfour? Come on.

They have pretty much the same ERA, and Cecil has pitched a few more innings. Bob Melvin says Bartolo Colon is scheduled to pitch before the All Star Game, rendering him ineligible, which would force a spot open, hopefully for Balfour.

1. Adrian Beltre, Texas Rangers

Heading into 2013 Beltre had hit for 134 XBH in the last 2 seasons with the Texas Rangers. He has 364 HRs, 485 2B and 30 3B so far. He could end up with 500 HRs and 650 2B by the time he is finished playing baseball. He must pass Frank Robinson (1186) or Lou Gehrig (1190) to end up in the top 10 of ALL-Time.  He is only 176  XBH behind Chipper Jones for 25th -1055 (Pujols will enter the top 25 next year so you must look at the 24th spot.)  Beltre is 312 XBH behind Gehrig.  Beltre has 4 years left on his Rangers contract and could see some time as a DH afterwards in the AL.

Heading into 2013 Beltre had hit for 134 XBH in the last 2 seasons with the Texas Rangers. He has 364 HRs, 485 2B and 30 3B so far. He could end up with 500 HRs and 650 2B by the time he is finished playing baseball. He must pass Frank Robinson (1186) or Lou Gehrig (1190) to end up in the top 10 of ALL-Time. He is only 176 XBH behind Chipper Jones for 25th -1055 (Pujols will enter the top 25 next year so you must look at the 24th spot.) Beltre is 312 XBH behind Gehrig. Beltre has 4 years left on his Rangers contract and could see some time as a DH afterwards in the AL.

He is in the same positional conundrum as Josh Donaldson and Evan Longoria, but frankly I believe that he is better than Manny Machado. I get that Machado is young and exciting and has a lot of doubles, but Beltre is just better this year.

He was just named AL Player of the week hitting .478 with four HR and is hitting .308 this season with 18 HR and 47 RBI. If Donaldson is not the first guy picked, Beltre will be.

National League

5. Rex Brothers, Colorado Rockies

a rex brothers

This season, the Rockies part-time closer is 2-0 with a .98 ERA and has 38 K in 36.2 innings.

In my opinion, the National League has a much stronger bullpen than the American League, so it is not a major surprise that Brothers did not get picked.

Because some pitchers will become ineligible to pitch, I think there is a good chance that Brothers could wind up on the team.

4. Hyun-Jin Ryu, Los Angeles Dodgers

Hyun-jin Ryu

In his first season in the United States, Ryu has done very well. He is 7-2 with a 2.82 ERA and a 1.23 WHIP. He only has 90 K. I really do not see why any reason why Ryu was not picked.

A funny thought that comes to mind is Bruce Bochy trying to ignite the rivalry. Dodgers fans have reason to be angry at Bochy for this snub, and they will get even more angry if he picks Matt Harvey to start the game over Clayton Kershaw.

3. Mike Leake, Cincinnati Reds

mikeleake

At the beginning of the season, some thought Leake could split time between the starting rotation and the bullpen, maybe even in the minor leagues. When Johnny Cueto went to the DL, Leake had to compete with prospect Tony Cingrani for a spot in the rotation.

Despite Cingrani’s stellar pitching, Leake retained his spot and has gone 7-4 with a 2.73 ERA. I think there’s a good chance that Leake could be on the team should a pitcher drop out.

2. Mat Latos, Cincinnati Reds

dallas-latos-and-mat

Latos is another guy that might end up on the team after someone becomes ineligible. This year, he is 8-2 with a 3.18 ERA and a 1.22 WHIP, to go along with 120 K.

There are some very good pitchers in the National League this year, so I would chalk Latos not getting picked to being unlucky.

1. Mark Melancon, Pittsburgh Pirates

After writing a piece on Melancon last week, I realized how good he actually is. This year, I think he has gotten overshadowed by Jason Grilli. Everyone talks about Grilli without even mentioning the guy that sets him up. Melancon is 2-1 with a .85 ERA this year.

Melancon has traveled his fair share over the past few years seeing time with the Astros and Red Sox. He looks to have found a home with the Pirates, however, posting a great .99 ERA while going 1-1 with 39 K and a .88 WHIP. I would say that Melancon could be a trade target, but the Pirates might not want to trade him if they contend.  melancon had a great 2011 campaign with the Houston Astros - going 8-4 with a 2.78 in 74 Appearances and 20 Saves.

Melancon has traveled his fair share over the past few years seeing time with the Astros and Red Sox. He looks to have found a home with the Pirates, however, posting a great .99 ERA while going 1-1 with 39 K and a .88 WHIP. I would say that Melancon could be a trade target, but the Pirates might not want to trade him if they contend. Melancon had a great 2011 campaign with the Houston Astros – going 8-4 with a 2.78 in 74 Appearances and 20 Saves.

***The views and opinions expressed in this report are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of mlbreports.com or their partners***

Today’s feature was prepared by our Baseball Writer Bernie Olshansky. We highly encourage you to leave your comments and feedback at the bottom of the page and share in the discussion with our readers.

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Bernie Olshansky

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About bernieolshansky

Living in the San Francisco Bay Area, I’ve experienced some exciting times with the local baseball teams—the Giants winning the World Series being the most memorable highlight. Some of my favorite players include Felix Hernandez, Tim Lincecum, and Cliff Lee among others. I played baseball up through my freshman year of high school and transitioned into being a full time fan. I regularly attend major and minor league games when I have free time. I enjoy working at a baseball store. I’m in my senior year of high school and hope to major in Journalism or Sports Administration in college. Follow Bernie on Twitter (@BernieOlshansky).

Posted on July 9, 2013, in MLB Player Profiles, MLB Teams: Articles and Analysis, Players: Fantasy Baseball Articles, The Rest: Everything Baseball and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Comments Off on Top Five MLB All Star Game Snubs (AL + NL).

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