The 2012 Major League All-Star Game is just around the bend and league rosters were announced earlier today. Like each and every year, there were a few surprises—some players who were snubbed and some who were given an honor that they didn't deserve.
This year's most erroneous All-Star selection is hands down Bryan LaHair, who continues to gain undeserved acclamation from Chicago Cubs fans. Let's take a statistical look at these claims.
LaHair's overall stats this season look like this: .284/.364/.526 with 13 HR and only 28 RBI. That last number is just disturbing. Let me repeat it: only 28 RBI. Wow, are you kidding me? Now, LaHair defenders look at this and say it has to do with his team's inability to get on base before him—I say that's nonsense.
Bryan's numbers with NO runners on base are .336/.400/.598, pretty decent. But this is where it gets ugly. When batting with runners on base, Lahair's production drops off dramatically to .213/.317/.427.
But, wait! It only gets better. "All-Star" Bryan LaHair is hitting a pitiful .137/.297/.235 in 51 at-bats with runners in scoring position.
Let's be honest here folks, these are not All-Star numbers. Bryan LaHair was a good story in April, but a good 59 at-bats does not make you an All-Star. Let's look at his month by month numbers:
April .390/.471/.780, 5 HR, 14 RBI
May .253/.343/.448, 5 HR, 8 RBI
June .231/.286/.400, 3 HR, 6 RBI
Like I said, Bryan LaHair was a good story for a few weeks in April, but his numbers have since caught up to him. He is who he is and that is not an All-Star caliber player.
It's a true shame when players like LaHair take a roster spot from players that are clearly more deserving. If the N.L. needed a backup first baseman then they needed look no further than Adam LaRoche, who has 15 HR and 50 RBI while leading his team to the top of the N.L. East divisional race.
Let's also not forget that the Cubs are 29-49 and maintain the worst record in baseball. Yet, the worst team in baseball is sending two players to Kansas City. With home-field advantage in the World Series at stake, it's about time MLB look to prevent such nonsense in the future.