So, without further ado, here are the players who made my 2009 MLB End of Year All-Star Teams (in alphabetical order by position):
(Lots of space here when I added the table. Don't know why...)
Most of the position players were chosen based on statistics comparing the top eight position players in each league (hits, runs, home runs, rbi's, walks, strikeouts, stolen bases, caught stealing, and batting average). In most cases, the players I had chosen earlier due to the one person per team rule made the top three (with the only exception of the second base position in the NL).
In previous years, I tended to show a little more bias to Chicago players (on both sides) in cases where if I thought I could choose them over another person, I would (hey, I'm from Chicago, what can I say). And when I introduce the teams from previous years (I swear I will do this during the off season...), you will see what I mean. But for the second year in a row, because I am presenting them to the world, I thought I'd try to be as open minded as I can and pick the proper deserving players. And for the first time in a long time, both Chicago teams have only one representative each (Lee for the NL, Pierzynski for the AL). Other one-person teams this year include the Athletics (Cust), Indians (Choo), Orioles (Markakis), Royals (Grienke), Brewers (Braun), Mets (Castillo), Padres (Bell), and Pirates (Laroche). The Red Sox, Yankees, Cardinals and Phillies each have five players representing them on both teams. This is also the first time that I can recall having an entire outfield trio from one team on one of my all-star teams (I have had in the past all four members of an infield on a team). And for the first time ever, two brothers make the same team at the same position (Yadier and Bengie are both catchers. Imagine if brother Jose played in the NL).
Are there snubs? You bet. Prince Fielder isn't on the NL side. Neither is Adrian Gonzalez. One glaring omission on the AL side would be Alex Rodriguez. There are (ahem) legitimate reasons why I didn't add them this year. For example, Michael Young had the highest batting average in the AL for third basemen this year (.322, along with an .892 OPS, 22 home runs, and 280 total bases). I just could not keep him off the team. Evan Longoria and Chone Figgins went 1 and 2 on my calculation scales, so in they went, leaving ARod (who was #3) on the outside. It was once said that it wouldn't matter how many times you expand an all-star roster, someone will always be left out.
So ends the presentation for my 2009 End of Year MLB All-Star Teams. Please feel free to comment, debate, tell me that I did a good job, or that I don't know what I'm talking about and should have put in this person for another (A commentor suggested that I should have picked Brian Roberts over Markakis).
Let the debates continue. Again, during the off-season, I'll be looking back at past teams that I made up in my spare time. It'll be an experience for me to look back and see where my mind was at the time. And it will give me something to do before the 2010 Topps cards come out.