Thursday, 14 June 2007

My National League All-Stars (so far)

Last week I gave my American League All-Stars, and now it's time for the National League, because I know everyone has been waiting for it.

Catcher: Russell Martin (LAD)
Martin is the easy choice here and should be a regular All-Star for many years. Only 24 years old, he is first in the NL in OBP and SLG, and even has 11 SB. With Brian McCann not hitting nearly as well as he was last year, Martin becomes the obvious choice here.

First Base: Prince Fielder (MIL)
Albert Pujols is hitting better and better and may eventually pass Fielder, but as of now Fielder is the choice. He's got a solid .379 OBP, and has an MLB best .639 SLG. He is also tied for the MLB lead with 23 HR. He's been the best NL 1B so far.

Second Base: Chase Utley
He started a little slow, but has once again clearly established himself as the best 2B in the NL and in the MLB. His OBP is again near .400 and he is slugging over the .550 mark, giving him an OPS far superior than the other 2B in the League. He is also first in the NL in Doubles and RBI.

Shortstop: Hanley Ramirez (FLA)
I devoted a whole post to comparing Hanley Ramirez vs. Jose Reyes, but in reality this race is a lot closer than just them. Edgar Renteria, JJ Hardy, and maybe even Jimmy Rollins also have cases here. Hardy and Rollins have displayed the most power, but they are not getting on base nearly as much as the other guys. Reyes is not hitting for as much power as the others, so that leaves me with Ramirez and Renteria. They are nearly even in the hitting categories, but I'll go with Hanley Ramirez and his edge in speed over Renteria.

Third Base: Miguel Cabrera (FLA)
As he gains more and more weight he might lost some defensive mobility, but he's one of the best hitters in the MLB and easily the best hitting 3B in the NL. Aramis Ramirez (now on the DL) and David Wright are both decent candidates, but Cabrera has an OPS over 100 points higher than either of them. That makes him the pick.

Outfield: Barry Bonds (SF)
He's become a really bad defensive outfielder, but as the offensive numbers show, he deserves a spot in the All-Star game. He's a little low on PAs which is a problem, but look at those rate stats. He's getting on base at a .491 clip, for crying out loud. His .576 SLG in 4th in the NL. He deserves a spot.

Outfield: Matt Holliday (COL)
I suppose the stigma of playing half of his games in Coors Field might hurt him (and perhaps rightfully so), but he's still a good hitter outside of there. Overall, he's hitting over .350, getting on base at a nearly .400 clip, and has a great SLG percentage. He's one of the most underrappreciated players in the MLB, in my opinion.

Outfield: Aaron Rowand (PHI)
This is a tough position to fill, because there are a lot of guys that are all pretty close in value. However, I think Rowand is the best combination of offense and defense. He's batting over .300, taking a lot of walks, slugging well, and playing solid defense in CF. I can't argue too much with guys like Carlos Lee, Alfonso Soriano, or even Ken Griffey Jr., but Rowand is my choice.

Starting Pitcher: Jake Peavy (SD)
Peavy has been absolutely dominating this year, with a 1.82 ERA in over 90 IP. But even beyond that the numbers are better than the other NL starters. He's striking out 9.86 batters per 9 innings, has 3.81 K:BB ratio, a NL leading 1.00 WHIP, and even a great 2.14 DIPS ERA. He has been the most dominant pitcher in the MLB this year.

Overall, it looks like a I agree with a lot of the picks of One More Dying Quail over at Stiles Points, so I must be doing something right.

Any disagreements?