Recapping the Best Players at the MLB All-Star Break
Catcher: Gary Sanchez (NYY)
- The star catcher for the Bronx Bombers does exactly what the name suggests, hit bombs. Sanchez is having a great bounce back year from a disappointing and injury riddled 2018 campaign and is currently slashing .245/.316/.560 with twenty-four HR and fifty-seven RBI. Even with all the injuries, the Yankees are still chugging along with Sanchez a big contributor.
First Baseman: Carlos Santana (CLE)
- Looks like a return to Cleveland has done wonders for veteran first-baseman Carlos Santana. After an ‘ok’ season in Philly in 2018, Santana was traded back to Cleveland and is having an all-star year and is slashing .298/.417/.540 with nineteen HR and fifty-two RBI. Santana will participate in the HR Derby on Monday
Second Baseman: Whit Merrifield (KC)
- On a terrible Kansas City team, Whit Merrifield is still contributing at an elite level and is a hitting machine. This season, Merrifield is slashing .307/.356/.495 with eleven HR and forty-four RBI. The Royals should look into trading Merrifield as the trade deadline approaches as his values is extremely high.
Shortstop: Xander Bogaerts (BOS)
- After recently signing a big extension earlier in the season, Bogaerts is following up a career 2018 with another solid season. Bogaerts is currently slashing .295/.385/.535 with seventeen HR and sixty-three RBI. Bogaerts is one of the elite shortstops in the game and is producing like it.
Third Baseman: Alex Bregman (HOU)
- While Bregman may not hit for the best average, his power numbers are some of the best in the majors. Bregman is slashing .268/.394/.540 with twenty-three HR and fifty-six RBI. Sometimes we forget that Bregman is 25 years-old and will be on many all-star teams for years to come.
Outfielder #1: Mike Trout (LAA)
- Mike Trout is once again having another fantastic season after signing the biggest contract in MLB history. Trout is currently slashing .300/.455/.630 with twenty-six HR and sixty-three RBI. Trout is also one of the few players in MLB history is have at least twenty-five HR in his first full eight seasons.
Outfielder #2: Mookie Betts (BOS)
- After a monster 2018 season in which he won the AL MVP, Mookie Betts has been struggling this year but is still an all star calibre player in 2019. Betts is currently slashing .273/.392/.469 with thirteen HR and forty RBI. The Red Sox are hoping that Betts can turn it on in the second half of the season to show why he won the AL MVP last season.
Outfielder #3: Domingo Santana (SEA)
- Definitely a surprise name on this list, Domingo Santana is having a career year with the Seattle Mariners after a down 2018 season.. Santana is currently slashing .286/.355/.496 with eighteen HR and sixty-three RBI. The Mariners are clearly in a transition period and Santana nay be on the move before the July trade deadline.
Starting Pitcher #1: Justin Verlander (HOU)
- Like a fine wine, Justin Verlander seems to be getting better with age. The Astros ace has been terrific once again in 2019 with a record of 10-4 and has crafted an ERA of 2.98 and 0.81 WHIP with a K/BB ratio of 153/27. The Astros are gunning for another World Series and Verlander will help lead the Astros the rest of the way.
Starting Pitcher #2: Gerrit Cole (HOU)
- Houston’s embarrassment of riches continue with Gerrit Cole. An ace in his own right, Cole has been sensational since joining the Astros. Cole has a record of 9-5 with a 3.09 ERA and 1.02 WHIP to go along with a K/BB ratio of 170/30. Cole is extremely elite and can take over the ace role is Verlander ever decides to decline.
Relief Pitcher: Brad Hand (CLE)
- Brad Hand has returned as an elite reliever for Cleveland after switching back and forth the past two seasons. Hand has a record of 4-3 with twenty-three saves and has crafted an ERA of 2.17 with 0.99 WHIP and a K/BB ratio of 55/10. The Indians are hoping that Hand can be healthy for the remainder of the season.
Catcher: Yasmani Grandal (MIL)
- The Milwaukee Brewers needed a better catcher and they got him with Grandal. Grandal is having a career year for the Brewers slashing .255/.371/.518 with nineteen HR and forty-eight RBI. The Brewers with Grandal in their lineup are hoping to repeat an appearance in the NLCS and possibly a World Series birth.
First Baseman: Josh Bell (PIT)
- What a season it’s been for the Pirates first baseman. After an extremely disappointing 2018 season, Bell is on another level this season. Bell is slashing .304/.378/.654 with twenty-seven HR and eighty-four RBI. Bell should be in the conversation for NL MVP if he can keep this up.
Second Baseman: Ozzie Albies (ATL)
- The Braves are a young and exciting team to watch and Ozzie Albies comes with that excitement. Only 22 years-old, Albies is slashing .287/.346/.484 with fourteen HR and forty-nine RBI. The Braves are looking to take that next step this year and make some noise in the postseason.
Shortstop: Javier Baéz (ChC)
- After a MVP calibre season last year, Baéz has now cemented himself as one of the best players in baseball. The energetic shortstop is slashing .290/.325/.560 with twenty-two HR and sixty-two RBI. Baéz is now the catalyst for the Cub’s lineup and should continue his production for the rest of the year.
Third Baseman: Nolan Arenado (COL)
- Arenado is something special at third base. The perennial Rockies’ all-star and MVP candidate is having another monster season slashing .315/.381/.568 with twenty HR and sixty-seven RBI. Arenado continues to be the best third baseman in baseball and will try to help the Rockies get over the hump.
Outfielder #1: Christian Yelich (MIL)
- Yelich is simply sensational. After winning the 2018 NL MVP last season, Yelich has followed it up with arguably a better season. Yelich is slashing .329/.433/.707 with thirty-one HR and sixty-seven RBI to go along with nineteen stolen bases. The definition of a five-tool player, Yelich is now a top five player in baseball.
Outfielder #2: Cody Bellinger (LAD)
- Not to be overshadowed by Yelich and his bid to repeat as NL MVP, Bellinger is having an historic year. The young all-star is batting an absurd .341/.437/.701 with thirty HR and seventy-one RBI. The race for NL MVP is going to be fantastic if players like Bellinger, Yelich and Josh Bell continue their production.
Outfielder #3: Ronald Acuña Jr. (ATL)
- The 21 year-old star outfielder for the Braves has been everything as promised. Acuña is slashing .291/.371/.506 with twenty-one HR and fifty-three RBI. Acuña seems to be getting better every day and that should excite Atlanta Braves fans.
Starting Pitcher #1: Max Scherzer (WSH)
- Max Scherzer is still the best pitcher in baseball and has been absolutely dominant the past month. Scherzer has a record of 9-5 (seven wins straight) and has crafted an ERA of 2.30 as well as 0.98 WHIP with a K/BB ratio of 191/23. A broken nose can’t even stop Scherzer for dominating as he is well on his way to having a 250+ K season.
Starting Pitcher #2: Hyun-Jin Ryu (LAD)
- What a surprise season it’s been so far for Ryu. While Ryu has always been good, his health was always a concern, but he looks healthy this year and is pitching fantastic. Ryu has a record of 10-2 with a 1.73 ERA and 0.91 WHIP to go along with a K/BB ratio of 99/10. If Ryu can stay healthy and keep up his production, he should be considered for the NL Cy Young award.
Relief Pitcher: Josh Hader (MIL)
- After bursting on the baseball scene last season, the hard throwing lefty os having another stellar season. Hader has a 1-3 record with twenty saves and has crafted an ERA of 2.09 with 0.65 WHIP as well as a K/BB ratio of 79/13. Hader is defining the odds from being a 19th round draft choice in 2012 and is having a stellar career thus far.