Hey there, baseball fans. With the Mid-Summer Classic just a few short weeks away, it's time for one of our site's most storied traditions: our shadow All-Star Game selections. Each year, the staff at Beyond the Box Score votes on our own selections for the players most deserving of All-Star berths without taking into account fan voting or manager nepotism. (Though, let's be fair, this year was pretty good on that account.) Instead, we use objective metrics and our own expert analysis of all things baseball to select our own All-Star team and publish it so you can decide if we've come up with a worthy alternative.
Starting today, we'll roll out our selections, with the American League team first. And, so you can mock us for our choices, we'll provide a spreadsheet with all the votes of our staff, so you can understand who we considered.
Here's a (not-so) quick recap the criteria I asked our writers to use when deciding on this year's All-Stars.
- All-Star selection should be based primarily on objective analysis of on-field performance during the first half of the 2016 season.
- Secondary considerations for All-Star selection can include, at your discretion: objective analysis of on-field performance during the second half of the 2015 season, a player's "true talent level", career accomplishments, or other factors.
- The American League will have a starting designated hitter selected with the starters ... but the National League has their starting DH selected at the same time as the first set of reserves. Trust me, it worked.
- Outfield positions will be broken down into LF / CF / RF as opposed to just placing three outfielders on each team. Given the differences between the three positions, this feels appropriate.
- Each team will also have a starting pitcher voted on to the team. This pitcher is, presumably, the starter considered the best in his respective league at this time.
- Each of the MLB franchises will have a representative, even though some teams are awful.
So, without further ado -- here is our American League team and the vote results!
2016 Beyond the Box Score AL All-Star Starters
- Jose Altuve - 2B (Astros)
- Mike Trout - CF (Angels)
- Miguel Cabrera - 1B (Tigers)
- David Ortiz - DH (Red Sox)
- Manny Machado - 3B (Orioles)
- Xander Bogaerts - SS (Red Sox)
- Mookie Betts - RF (Red Sox)
- Ian Desmond - LF (Rangers)
- Salvador Perez - C (Royals)
- Jose Quintana - SP (White Sox)
2016 Beyond the Box Score AL All-Star Reserves
- Matt Wieters - C (Orioles)
- Edwin Encarnacion - 1B/DH (Blue Jays)
- Robinson Cano - 2B (Mariners)
- Brian Dozier - 2B (Twins)
- Francisco Lindor - SS (Indians)
- Carlos Correa - SS (Astros)
- Josh Donaldson - 3B (Blue Jays)
- Evan Longoria - 3B (Rays)
- George Springer - RF (Astros)
- Jackie Bradley Jr. - CF (Red Sox)
- Michael Saunders - LF (Blue Jays)
- Adam Eaton - RF (White Sox)
- Mark Trumbo - RF (Orioles)
- Nelson Cruz - RF (Mariners)
- Jose Quintana - SP (White Sox)
- Chris Sale - SP (White Sox)
- Corey Kluber - SP (Indians)
- Steven Wright - SP (Red Sox)
- Danny Salazar - SP (Indians)
- Rich Hill - SP (Athletics)
- Aaron Sanchez - SP (Blue Jays)
- Andrew Miller - RP (Yankees)
- Dellin Betances - RP (Yankees)
- Zach Britton - RP (Orioles)
- Will Harris - RP (Astros)