10 Players Who Deserve to be Higher in All Star Voting
Recently, there has been a rise in popularity of the opinion that All Star voting should be done by fellow players, coaches, and general managers, instead of it being fan-based. Fans seem to be torn on who they want voting, however most can agree on one thing; fan voting does not always result in the best player being #1. Often, voting results in a popularity contest, and the fan bases with the most loyal fans simply vote for all 9 of their home team’s starters, (Yes, I’m talking to you, Kansas City).
Here are 10 players who deserve to rank higher in this year’s All Star voting:
10 — Gregory Polanco (PIT), RF
Polanco is currently in 15th place among NL outfielders with 400,353 votes. These numbers don’t tell the full story, as his teammate Andrew McCutchen is in 8th place with 673,640 votes. This is despite Polanco edging out Andrew in nearly every offensive category, including a .897 OPS compared to McCutchen’s .716.
9 — Carlos Gonzales (COL), RF
Gonzales ranks in at 7th among NL outfielders with 780,290 votes. He is 79,364 votes behind 6th place, Chicago’s Jorge Soler. Just like Polanco, Car-Go has better numbers than Soler in every major category (the only exception being HBP, where Soler has 3 to Gonzales’ 0). Gonzales has an AVG. of .310, while Soler sports a mere .223.
8 — Adam Jones (BAL), CF
The 5 time All-Star, including the past 4 straight, only holds the 13th spot in the AL outfield race this year, with 531,790 votes. Jones has been one of the most consistent players in past years, with 4 All-Star appearances, 3 Golden Gloves, and a Silver Slugger Award since 2012. I’m not saying he should be a starter, but 13th seems a little low for someone of his skill level.
7 — Kevin Pillar (TOR), CF
Pillar is a stud in the field and has an average bat, yet only ranks 11th with 635,801. Yes, he’s only hitting .259 with 7 home-runs, but he has a .702 OPS. Not outstanding numbers, yet solid. The quality that I think that he posses that sets him apart from others is his fielding ability. The plays this guy makes are unreal. Does that make him a starter? No. However, I believe he deserves higher than 11th.
6 — Adrian Beltre (TEX), 3B
Adrian is a victim of another case of Kansas City Fans voting for anyone who played for their team. Adrian sits 178,314 votes behind Mike Moustakas, even though Moose has only played 27 games due to a torn ACL and a broken thumb. Also, it’s not even like Moustakas did well while he was playing, only hitting .240 with 13 RBI. C’mon, Royals fans. This is a bit of a stretch seeing the man only has one fully functioning leg and a healing broken thumb at the moment. Meanwhile, Adrian is hitting .275 with an OPS of .777 and putting together a decent season.
5 — Paul Goldschmidt (ARI), 1B
Paul is in 3rd place in the NL 1B race with 681,773 votes. He is also 157,415 votes behind 2nd place Brandon Belt. However, he edges out Belt in OPS and OBP, all while collecting more RBIs, home-runs, and runs scored. One thing that also puts him above Belt is his running ability. First basements aren’t known for their speed, yet Goldy has 9 stolen bases, which puts him only behind Will Myers (a former outfielder) for most among first basemen in the MLB.
4 — Buster Posey (SF), C
Buster is in 2nd among NL catchers, behind who else but Yadier Molina. However, Posey is only 75,413 votes behind, and getting closer. Yes, Molina is an extremely deserving candidate, and it is certain that he will extend his streak of 7 straight selections. Despite this, I think Posey deserves to be #1. Defensively, both are amazing backstops, but I think that Posey is a slightly better hitter. Buster has better numbers in all major offensive categories, and much better power, hitting 8 home-runs next to Yadier’s 1.
3 — Ian Kinsler (DET), 2B
Kinsler currently sits at 5th in voting among AL 2B with 553,205 votes. Yet again, Kinsler sits behind a Royals player that has no business being where he his; Omar Infante. Are you serious? Infante is an inconsistent fielder and a below average hitter. That’s not even the worst of it! Get this — he’s not even on an MLB team! The royals released him on June 15th, passing through waivers and is now an unrestricted free agent. But no, let’s still vote him over a guy hitting .298, scoring the 3rd most runs in the AL, has an OPS of .855, and has an above average glove.
2 — Francisco Lindor (CLE), SS
Not that I want to enter the huge debate about AL shortstops, but this is plain ridiculous. Lindor is in the AL top 15 in batting average, hits, runs scored, stolen bases, and WAR. Match this with above average defensive play, and you’d expect a reoccurring All-Star. However, Lindor isn’t even on the leader board, surprisingly not even making the top-5.
1 — Nolan Arenado (COL), 3B
It is quite obvious that Arenado is quite popular with fans, accumulating 1,543,515 votes. However, in another effort of fan bases voting for their team, he is behind last year’s rookie sensation Kris Bryant, part of the NL’s all-Cubs infield. I’m not saying that Bryant does not deserve it, as he is plain filthy. However, Arenado is a more skilled, well-rounded player. He has an OPS of .961, compared to Bryant’s .879, a SLG of .588 next to Bryant’s .519. Arenado also leads the NL with a WAR of 3.8, and is tied for most HRs in the MLB with 21. On top of this offensive dominance, he is just as good in the field. He has won a Golden Glove all of the three years that he has been in the majors. He currently is a leader in practically all aspects of the game, yet is still only 2nd in voting by a large margin.
Originally published my Michael Skinnion at baseballfam.com on June 25, 2016.