One of my favorite events of the year is the Major League Baseball All Star Game. Do I think that home field advantage in the World Series should be decided by the winner of the All Star game? No, I don’t. But I still enjoy the event regardless.
The mid-summer classic offers fans the opportunity for fans to see the best players in the game all on the field at the same time. It’s quite a scene.
With the All Star game exactly one month away from yesterday, I am going to put together my All Star game roster. Today I will do the National League and tomorrow, I will pick the American League All Stars.
Of course I will follow the same rules that this year’s National League manager, Charlie Manuel has to go by. A roster of 33 players and each team in the National League has to be represented.
With out any further adieu, here is my National League All Star Team:
C. Brian McCann, Atlanta Braves
1B. Albert Pujols, St Louis Cardinals
2B. Chase Utley, Philadelphia Phillies
SS. Hanley Ramirez, Florida Marlins
3B. David Wright, New York Mets
OF. Raul Ibanez, Philadelphia Phillies
OF. Carlos Beltran, New York Mets
OF. Brad Hawpe, Colorado Rockies
SP. Matt Cain, San Francisco Giants
There were six selections that were pretty obvious. The three players that are worth debating are Ramirez at shortstop, Hawpe in the outfield, and Cain as the starting pitcher.
I gave the slight edge to Ramirez over Tejeda at shortstop based on Ramirez's higher OPS and more stolen bases. Does anyone realize what a great year Brad Hawpe is having? .337/9/47 is mighty impressive. I gave him the slight edge of Ryan Braun so far.
Cain is 9-1 and in my opinion, the most consistent National League starter, so he gets the nod over Johan Santana and Chad Billingsley.
Johan Santana, New York Mets
Chad Billingsley, Los Angeles Dodgers
Dan Haren, Arizona Diamondbacks
Josh Johnson, Florida Marlins
Ted Lilly, Chicago Cubs
Tim Lincecum, San Francisco Giants
Johnny Cueto, Cincinnati Reds
Francisco Rodriguez, New York Mets
Trevor Hoffman, Milwaukee Brewers
Heath Bell, San Diego Padres
Jonathon Broxton, Los Angeles Dodgers
Ryan Franklin, St Louis Cardinals
After last year’s marathon, I decided to go with 13 pitchers instead of 12. I also went with more starters because of what happened last year. The toughest omissions were Jason Marquis (8 wins), Zach Duke (7-4 3.10 ERA), Yovanni Gallardo (2.88 ERA) andBrian Wilson (17 saves)
C. Yadier Molina, St Louis Cardinals
C. Carlos Ruiz, Philadelphia Phillies
1B. Adrian Gonzalez, San Diego Padres
1B. Prince Fielder, Milwaukee Brewers
2B. Freddy Sanchez, Pittsburgh Pirates
2B. Orlando Hudson, Los Angeles Dodgers
SS.Miguel Tejada, Houston Astros
3B. Ryan Zimmerman, Washington Nationals
OF. Ryan Braun, Milwaukee Brewers
OF. Justin Upton, Arizona Diamondbacks
OF. Matt Kemp, Los Angeles Dodgers
OF. Carlos Lee, Houston Astros
Some of the notable position players I had to leave off the roster were Chipper Jones, Adam Dunn (couldn’t have two Nationals on the roster), Hunter Pence (hard call between him and Lee) and Ryan Howard.
Here is a player by team breakdown:
4. New York Mets, Los Angeles Dodgers
3. Philadelphia Phillies, Milwaukee Brewers, St Louis Cardinals
2. Florida Marlins, Arizona Diamondbacks, San Diego Padres, San Francisco Giants, Houston Astros
1. Atlanta Braves, Washington Nationals, Chicago Cubs, Cincinnati Reds, Pittsburgh Pirates, Colorado Rockies