The star vote is out. When I was a kid, the first thing I did when I got my All-Star Ballot, the old ballots you took out with your pencil, was vote for all the guys on my favorite team. . The star game is wonderful. But we still want to see our own guys.
Every team will end up with an All-Star no matter what. But when you fill out your ballot, you want the most deserving guy on your team to make it. Each team is represented in each position, but each team has a more deserving player on the ballot. There are no pitchers on the ballot, so you cannot vote for them. But if you absolutely must vote for at least one guy on each team, here’s the guy you should vote for. They are all deserving. But here are the most deserving from each team so far.
It’s odd that Vladimir Guerrero Jr. isn’t the pick here, but he’s had a somewhat down year by his standards. Not so Springer – it’s actually the second highest OPS+ of his career.
Orioles: Trey Mancini, DH
Key Stat: .303/.374/.448 slash line
Mancini has never made an All-Star Game, but now is the perfect time to vote for him…especially since he may not be wearing that Orioles jersey any longer.
Spokes: Yandy Diaz, 3B
Key Stat: .424 OBP, AL-leading 35 BB
Wander Franco is an easy pick based on star power, but he’s on the injured reserve and his performance has been spotty this year. And he will have plenty of opportunities. What about Díaz, who has quietly been the OBP machine this offense has been looking for?
Red Sox: Rafael Devers, 3B
Key Stat: 12 HR, 31 RBI, MLB-best 80 hits, 23 2B
Devers is still only 25 years old. How is it possible?
Yankees: Aaron Judge, OF
Key stat: 22 HR, 45 RBI, .675 slugging
The judge will be as much of an attraction to this game as any player on the court, and not just because he’ll show his stuff for a wide variety of free agent contenders.
Ramírez may be the best player in the AL who has yet to win the MVP award, and considering he plays in Cleveland, this might be the best showcase he’s had all year.
Benintendi didn’t become the superstar we thought he would be when he finished second in AL Rookie of the Year voting in 2017 with Boston, but he’s having the best year of his career, by quite a wide margin.
Cabrera, at 39, could be the Tigers’ best hitter right now? Not great for Detroit, but wouldn’t it be great to see him in Tinseltown?
Twins: Luis Arraez, 1B
Key stat: MLB-high .361 BA, .448 OBP
All right, fine, he only has one circuit. He leads the Majors in batting average, and he’s as good a sign as any of the reasons this team leads its division.
Of course, he is currently injured. But he should be back in the All-Star Game, and how happy would it be to see him on baseball’s biggest stage?
Angels: Mike Trout, OF
Key stat: 14 HR, 30 RBI, .989 OPS
Taylor Ward might have slightly higher numbers now that Trout is in a slump, but come on, the answer is obviously Trout here, given that Shohei Ohtani hasn’t hit so well this season. Can Trout get his unprecedented third MVP trophy?
It could be a whole summer for Alvarez: a contract extension and his first All-Star Game appearance.
Okay, so there’s really no right answer here, and the A’s All-Star will probably be a pitcher, but Andrus was one of the best hitters in Oakland, has one of the best two seasons in his career and hasn’t made an All-Star Game in a decade. Why not?
Sailors: Ty France, 1B
Key stat: .327/.402/.491
Julio Rodríguez will have plenty of time to make the All-Star Games, but it was France who helped keep this team’s struggling offense afloat for most of the first half. He’s been quietly one of MLB’s best hitters since the start of the 2021 season.
It’s hard to find a receiver who can hit the ball, so Heim, out of nowhere, has become one of the Majors’ best receivers. This selection is probably not what Rangers expected when they signed Corey Seager and Marcus Semien last offseason.
Acuña hasn’t even really started yet, but he’s still one of the best outfielders in the NL.
Chisholm has taken a leap forward this year, to the point where his production is finally living up to his potential and enthusiasm.
There are so many Mets to choose from — Jeff McNeil actually leads that team in WAR — but it’s fair to say that Alonso knows all-star week at this point. Let’s just hope the injury he suffered on a one-off Tuesday in San Diego isn’t too serious.
Nationals: Juan Soto, OF
Key stat: 12 HR, 21 RBI, MLB-high 46 BB
He’s the obvious choice, even if this year is downright weird to watch. How does Soto beat .226?
Phillies: Bryce Harper, DH
Key stat: 14 HR, 44 RBI, NL-best .628 SLG
If it weren’t for the DH in the NL, Harper might not be playing right now because his elbow injury has kept him out of the field. His striking, however, was unaffected.
The Brewers don’t do much on offense other than home runs, which no player exemplifies better than Tellez.
Cardinals: Paul Goldschmidt, 1B
Key Stat: 12 HR, 47 RBI, NL-high 72 hits, 1,023 OPS
Surprisingly enough, this would be Goldschmidt’s first All-Star appearance as a Cardinal. (He made the game six straight years with the D-backs.)
Hayes doesn’t hit for a lot of power, but every other part of his game has clicked into place during his year: he just might be the new defensive standard at third base.
There aren’t many choices offensively in Cincinnati, but if Willson Contreras is traded from Chicago, Stephenson could be the best receiver in the NL.
The guy who took over first base for Paul Goldschmidt hits more homers than Goldy anyway.
Betts hasn’t missed an All-Star Game since 2015, and he certainly won’t miss one at his home ballpark.
Pederson left the pearls in Georgia but is on course to have the best season of his career. He seems a perfect match for the Giants, doesn’t he?
Will this be his MVP year? Whether he goes all the way or not, Machado has more than earned the value of his contract, carrying the Padres until Fernando Tatis Jr. can return.
Rockies: CJ Cron, 1B
Key stat: 14 HR, 41 RBI
Turns out Kris Bryant is not the obvious All-Star of this team.