It’s early yet, but if the All-Star voting ended today, the nine starting position players in the AL
C: Joe Mauer
1B: Mark Teixeira
2B: Robinson Cano
SS: Derek Jeter
OF: Ichiro Suzuki, Carl Crawford, Nelson Cruz
There have been worse voting results in history, but this one is far from perfect. Mauer, Longoria and Guerrero are obvious choices at their position thus far. Otherwise:
- Teixeira is an awful choice — Justin Morneau is destroying baseballs this year.
- Cano is probably the best choice at second, but Ty Wigginton is pretty close.
- No one is having a fabulous season at short in the AL, but Jeter isn’t having the best either. I’d go with Elvis Andrus I suppose, or maybe Alex Gonzalez, depending on how you feel about contact vs. power vs. glove dynamics;
- In the outfield the Nelson Cruz choice is a good one even with his limited playing time. I understand the Crawford and Suzuki picks, but [gulp] Vernon Wells and Alexis Rios are having great seasons so far, as are Shin-Soo Choo, Magglio Ordonez, and Nick Swisher.
- DH is the right choice, but check out the vote getters directly behind Vlad: Matsui, Griffey, Pat Burrell and Big Papi. Is this a reflection on the state of the DH in baseball, or a harsh comment on the state of fandom? You be the judge.
And for the record, I’ll be updating this kind of thing throughout the early summer — NL vote leaders tomorrow — and when I do I’ll likely be critical of the vote totals. However, I realize that this is a fan’s vote and that the All-Star Game is a fan’s game.
It’s my personal preference that those who are playing best in the first half get honored, but I know that I don’t have a monopoly on wisdom when it comes to this subject. And ultimately? The All-Star Game has become something of a blah event anyway, so who cares? More on that as the summer wears on as well.