With the deadline for All-Star voting quickly approaching, I thought it would be a good idea to list some deserving players who did not make the ballot. These players will have exhibited All-Star calibre numbers, but may require some write-in votes. The only criteria: each player must not have his name on the 2010 MLB All-Star ballot.
Brennan Boesch, Detroit Tigers
Boesch was essentially an unknown to most people at the start of the season. In fact, a search for him on Google will bring up a page with his minor league stats before his major league stats on Baseball-Reference. Go ahead, try it and see for yourself. Boesch did not make his Major League debut until April 23rd, a game in which he went 2-for-4 against the Texas Rangers. Since then, he has been on a tear. For weeks, Boesch was listed near the top of the AL batting race. He has since trailed off, and is now hitting .338/.389/.621 for the Tigers through 53 games. He has been a pleasant surprise for the Detroit Tigers as their left fielder, and shows no signs of slowing down as his numbers have been fairly consistent throughout the season. With a batting average and slugging percentage this high, Boesch deserves to be in the All-Star game.
Andrés Torres, San Francisco Giants
Torres has been around for a few years. At 32 years of age, he’s no rookie. He played in 75 games for the Giants in 2009 and put up good numbers. But his 2010 has been great. Torres has a slash line of .276/.375/.448 through 66 games while playing all three outfield positions for the Giants and flashing some speed on the basepaths with 13 steals to date. Of his 61 hits this season, only 33 have been singles. His on base percentage and stealing ability may make him a good leadoff hitter, but combine that with his extra base power and it makes him a great #2 guy in the lineup. Torres deserves to be in that All-Star game with the numbers he is putting up this season not simply because of his batting average, but due to his ability to hit for extra bases and ability to move into scoring position after reaching base.
Ángel Pagán, New York Mets
Taking over the everyday job in centre field from the injured Carlos Beltran, Pagán has performed quite well. He has managed a slash line of .302/.363/.443 as the everyday centre fielder for the Mets, but stands to lose his starting job with Beltran’s return coming closer. There’s a great article over at Amazin’ Avenue that states what the Mets should do when Beltran returns, but chances are that Pagán will not get as much playing time as he deserves. His 14 steals this year and the fact that he has made only two errors in the field should dictate that he would be an integral part of the Mets’ lineup, but we’ll have to see what the Mets actually do.
These three guys may not be the best players in baseball, but they are certainly going beyond expectations with their performances this season. The problem with all three is that they were either not on the big league roster to start the season, or they assumed starting roles due to injury and were therefore left off the official MLB All-Star ballots. Many people may not vote for these guys if their names were on the ballots to begin with, but they definitely deserve recognition for their great seasons.