This is part three of a nine-part series where we look at each position in the National League for the All-Star roster. We will see how different contributors constructed their All-Star rosters, as well as which players deserve to make the team.
Second base has seen a lot of change in recent years. Different players have come and gone from the elite here. A few players have stayed among the leaders, but there has been change as well. In recent years, the names that have appeared the most often are Brandon Phillips and Chase Utley. Once again, one of them will lead the charge at second base, but could the Brewers sneak in somewhere behind him?
Here are the top 10 candidates by fWAR:
Note: While Anthony Rendon has spent most of his playing time this season at third base, he is listed at second on the ballot, so he will be covered here instead. List has also been updated to remove Luis Valbuena, who will be covered at third base instead, where he is listed on the ballot.
Current All-Star Voting Results
Results as of Monday evening, from MLB.com:
The Contributors Vote
|Voter||Starter||Reserve #1||Reserve #2|
|Cheeseandcorn||Chase Utley||Neil Walker||Daniel Murphy|
|Derek Harvey||Chase Utley||Daniel Murphy||Anthony Rendon (A)|
|Fred Hofstetter||Chase Utley||Daniel Murphy||Dee Gordon|
|Hangwithem Rach||Chase Utley||Neil Walker||Dee Gordon|
|-JP-||Chase Utley||Daniel Murphy|
|Jordan Mader||Chase Utley||Dee Gordon||Daniel Murphy|
|Noah Jarosh||Chase Utley||Daniel Murphy||Anthony Rendon|
|NPetrashek||Chase Utley||Dee Gordon||Anthony Rendon|
It was a clean sweep for Chase Utley in the contributor vote, and it's obvious why. He is clearly leading second basemen in the league, and it's by a good margin. After that, it gets a little more muddy. Daniel Murphy appears on most ballots, but not everyone voted for him. Anthony Rendon also made a few ballots, and his ability to play second and third could come into play there. Dee Gordon got some attention for his ability as a base stealer, and Neil Walker got attention for his bat.
Here is what some of the contributors had to say:
Fred Hofstetter: "Dee Gordon makes it as a late inning base stealer."
Jordan Mader: "Dee Gordon somehow is second best at second base. Daniel Murphy sneaks on because we need a Met."
Noah Jarosh: "Second base and shortstop there can be no debate." Noah also mentions Dee Gordon as a player worth mentioning, but didn't make his roster.
This is the first time that the fan vote and the leader in stats matches up. Chase Utley leads the vote, and he deserves to lead it. He is clearly ahead of all the other candidates at second base. After Utley, the choice gets a little tougher.
Looking at the stats, Daniel Murphy is also clearly second. However, he isn't getting much attention since he isn't as well known as some of the other candidates. Anthony Rendon has put together a strong season in his second year in the league, but also doesn't have much name recognition either. Dee Gordon's stats aren't as impressive as the others, but the number of stolen bases he has is far above anyone else in the league. That could be enough to get him on the team. Then, there's Neil Walker. His offensive numbers are arguably the second best of any of the candidates here, but his defense is so bad that it hurts his fWAR. However, the game is more about offense, so that could be enough.
So, who ends up making the roster? Daniel Murphy and Anthony Rendon deserve a spot, though it could be tough for both to make the team due to the roster size. There's also a few players that could play spoiler here. Dee Gordon, Brandon Phillips, and Neil Walker all have a chance to make the team as well, and even Luis Valbuena could sneak in. Someone could get snubbed, but beyond Murphy and Rendon, no one else has a very strong case.
This is another position where the Brewers won't factor in to the All-Star game. Scooter Gennett has put together a good season so far, but there's better candidates than him, and his exclusion from the fan ballot means that he won't make it this year. As for Rickie Weeks, while he has done well in limited time, he won't make it because he hasn't played enough games. The Brewers won't have any impact here.
Now that you've seen the case for second base, what do you think? This is your chance to voice your opinion. Below is a Google form; fill that out to submit your vote for the position. Each pick will be assigned a point value that will be used to determine the results (pick #1 gets the most, pick #3 gets the fewest). Please vote only once. The poll will remain open until noon tomorrow.
Note: Not all three of these picks would potentially make the team. There is one starter and one reserve guaranteed for second base, but the third will be for a possible bench spot in what bench spots are available. You do not have to fill in all three spots, you can fill in only two if you choose.