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Which Yankees deserve to be All-Stars?

The 2019 MLB All-Star Game will be played on Tuesday, July 9. The first round of voting is currently live and goes through June 21st. Vote for your Yankees!

Injured/not enough games

The following list of players have simply not played enough games to warrant making the squad or are currently injured (or are expected to be injured by the time of the game):

No chance

No offense to these guys, but if they somehow found their way onto the A.L. roster either

A) They snuck in,

B) We’re living in an alternative universe where Shane Robinson is our MVP right fielder and Kei Igawa strikes out Mike Trout looking every time, or

C) There was a boatload of injuries.

 

I’m sticking Hicks and Paxton here for the time being. They have the talent to go on a hot streak over the next month, but they simply haven’t accumulated enough playing time to warrant the selection.

Likely won’t make it but would be fun

Gio Urshela (.325/.371/.455, 3 HR, 23 RBI, 120 wRC+, 1.0 WAR )

Is Gio deserving of an All-Star nod? Of course! But it seems like a long shot. Not only does Urshela not have a track record that could help him, but he also faces some still competition at third base in the American League. More household names such as Alex Bregman and Matt Chapman are having solid years, as are other lesser-known names such as Hunter Dozier and even Rafael Devers. I think I speak for all Yankees fans when I say I would absolutely love to see Gio in Cleveland, but it doesn’t seem to realistic at this point.

Domingo German (11 GS, 64.0 IP, 9 W, 3.66 ERA, 9.98 K/9, 1.5 WAR)

German is another player I would love to see represent the Yankees. The 26-year-old is enjoying his breakout season but has come down to earth in recent starts. He is likely on an innings limit of some sort, so who knows where he’ll be in a month. There will be a lot of pitchers who warrant being All-Stars, and I think German’s expected regression will keep him out.

Possibility/good chance

DJ LeMahieu (.315/.363/.466, 7 HR, 38 RBI, 120 wRC+, 1.7 WAR)

LeMahieu’s WAR is almost at the levels it was at the past two seasons (1.9 in 2017 and 2.0 in 2018), and it’s only the first week of June. He’s definitely in the conversation for team MVP at this point, and it also helps that he’s solid in the field. Jose Altuve represents the biggest challenge at second base, but he has been injured. Even if he’s not the starter, he should definitely have a good shot at making it as a reserve.

Gleyber Torres (.279/.326/.523, 14 HR, 31 RBI, 120 wRC+, 1.5 WAR)

Torres is listed as a shortstop for All-Star purposes. While he’s been solid and is playing at close to an All-Star level, there’s a ton of competition in the A.L. Tim Anderson, Elvis Andrus, Xander Bogaerts, Carlos Correa, Francisco Lindor, Adalberto Mondesi, Jorge Polanco, and Andrelton Simmons are all having nice years as well. Yes, that is a long list of names. I say he has a good chance just because of his numbers, but in reality I don’t see Torres making the cut due to competition at the position.

Luke Voit (.267/.380/.511, 15 HR, 39 RBI, 137 wRC+, 1.2 WAR)

Voit is proving that his two-month stint last year was no fluke. He would actually be my vote for A.L. first baseman right now – there isn’t a ton of competition. Jose Abreu of the White Sox is also an option, but I could easily see Voit finding his way onto the roster.

Zack Britton (27.1 IP, 2.96 ERA, 1.21 WHIP, 8.23 K/9, 0.5 WAR)

Adam Ottavino (28.1 IP, 1.27 ERA, 1.24 WHIP, 11.44 K/9, 0.6 WAR)

Tommy Kahnle (24.1 IP, 1.48 ERA, 0.86 WHIP, 12.95 K/9, 0.7 WAR)

Relievers are somewhat of a wild card. They are not voted by fans, but I expected to see at least a couple of Yankees in that pen in Cleveland. Maybe even more? Who knows, but the above three are all having themselves great seasons. If I had to choose one – probably Kahnle.

Masahiro Tanaka (13 GS, 76.1 IP, 3.42 ERA, 1.19 WHIP, 7.90 K/9, 1.6 WAR)

Tanaka is being Tanaka: reliable and effective. As with others in the category, he probably won’t be the first name that pops to mind when thinking about starters to add to the All-Star Game roster, but he keeps trucking along with a great ERA- (park- and league-adjusted version of ERA; 100 is league average; the lower the better) of 75. He could be an option should there be an injury or if he goes on a run over his next few starts.

Near locks

Gary Sanchez (.270/.345/.660, 19 HR, 27 RBI, 158 wRC+, 1.5 WAR)

Sanchez is easily the best offensive catcher in the A.L.; probably in the MLB. While his defense has improved dramatically, there are better options in that category. He leads the junior circuit in homers and slugging (all though he technically falls nine plate appearances short of qualifying). However, his popularity and stats give him the edge over anyone else and barring something very surprising, at this rate he will be the A.L. starting catcher.

Aroldis Chapman (23.2 IP, 1.52 ERA, 0.93 WHIP, 17 SV, 12.93 K/9, 1.0 WAR)

On the surface, Chapman is having his best full season as a Yankee so far. He’s third in the A.L. in saves with 17 and has the fourth highest WAR. Other closers like Ken Giles of the Blue Jays and Brad Hand of the Indians are having unbelievable years, but Chapman’s body of work will get him onto the squad.

Sentimental vote?

CC Sabathia (9 GS, 47.1 IP, 3.61 ERA, 1.25 WHIP, 7.99 K/9, 0.1 WAR)

Sabathia will be ending his 19-year career by retiring at the end of the season. There will be some debate as to whether or not he deserves to be in the Hall of Fame, but his credentials are pretty good. However, I don’t think he is quite at the levels Derek Jeter and Mariano Rivera were at in their final seasons (especially Jeter, since Mo would likely still be a top closer today). It doesn’t hurt that he is having another solid year after his renaissance, but he will fall short.

Stats as of games played through June 5.

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