While we at The Commissioners have our problems with the questionable selections for the 2011 Major League Baseball All-Star Game, we’re glad to see that fans have the opportunity to rectify some wrongs by San Francisco Giants manager Bruce Bochy and Texas Rangers manager Ron Washington. MLB has once again allowed fans to place their “Final Vote” and send one more player to the All-Star Game. With that being said, The Commissioners would like to once again offer endorsements.
In the American League, the Final Vote nominees are Ben Gordon of the Kansas City Royals, Adam Jones of the Baltimore Orioles, Paul Konerko of the Chicago White Sox, Victor Martinez of the Detroit Tigers, and Ben Zobrist of the Tampa Bay Rays. In the National League, the Final Vote nominees are Andre Ethier of the Los Angeles Dodgers, Todd Helton of the Colorado Rockies, Ian Kennedy of the All-Star Game host Arizona Diamondbacks, Michael Morse of the Washington Nationals, and Shane Victorino of the Philadelphia Phillies.
American League Final Vote Selection
Paul Konerko Chicago White Sox
Konerko is an easy selection and after seeing the shirt Mark Buehrle adorned at White Sox batting practice yesterday, I’m hooked on this selection. Konerko, is fourth in the AL in home runs with 21, tied for third in RBI at 62, and is clubbing a .317 batting average. Konerko is a possible Most Valuable Player candidate and he ought to be an All-Star. While I do like the idea of sending a utility player like Ben Zobrist who scores a lot of runs, the rest of his stats just aren’t there.
National League Final Vote Selection
Shane Victorino Philadelphia Phillies
This wasn’t as easy of a selection as the American League. When you start to compare pitching stats to batting stats it becomes difficult. Initially, the lean was towards Ian Kennedy, however after he got tagged by the Oakland Athletics yesterday for seven runs, Victorino became the clear choice. Admittedly, I’ve never been a big fan of Victorino, or the Philadelphia Phillies for that matter. His stats aren’t exactly eye opening. He doesn’t have a whole mess of steals, his RBI are low since he’s bats early in the order, and although he has a perfect fielding percentage this year, he’s an outfielder without a single assist. In the end, he’s still in the top ten in runs and he has a .303 batting average with an OBP of .376. In short, he creates runs. In game where there are a whole lot of big power hitters and RBI machines, the quick “just get on base” types of players get lost in the mix. Victorino should be a good speedster who can at least create a run for the NL.