So, without further ado, here are the players who made my 2012 MLB End of Year All-Star Teams (in alphabetical order by position):
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). But since I'm now announcing these publicly (compared to doing this privately in my mind), I thought I'd try to be as open minded as I can and pick the proper deserving players. And it hurt, really hurt. I would have loved to add both Paul Konerko and Adam Dunn to the AL side, and Darwin Barney to the NL side, but just couldn't fit either of the three. There are two White Sox players on the AL team this year (Pierzynski and Sale), there are two Cubs players on the NL side (Castro and Soriano). Other one-person teams this year include the Blue Jays (Encarnacion), Red Sox (Pedroia), Royals (Gordon), Astros (Altuve), Padres (Headley), Pirates (McCutchen), and Rockies (Carlos Gonzalez). The Rangers send six players to the AL squad, most players from one team on either league, the Angels and Yankees each send four. On the NL side, the Cardinals have five players to the team, most in the NL, the Phillies and Reds each send four.
Lots of familiar names to recent All-Star Teams are absent this year. There is no A-Rod, no Ichiro, no Longoria, no Hanley, et al. Changing of the guard perhaps? Probably. There are 25 players on both rosters making my All-Star teams for the very first time.
Are there snubs? You bet. On the AL, as mentioned before, the DH spot was an issue, only because I only allow one spot on the roster for it. David Ortiz had his usual great year, and so did Adam Dunn. If I allowed three DH's, both certainly would be listed above. Probably the biggest surprise on either roster was the inclusion of Mariners third baseman Kyle Seager. The twenty-four year-old infielder had more home runs than ARod (20 to 18), more RBI's (86 to 57), and struck out less (110 to 116). Yes, ARod played less games, but the intangibles favored Seager than the other six third baseman who were in the running for the final third baseman's spot. In the shortstop position, both real All-Stars Jeter and Cabrera are here. Alcides Escobar, Alexei Ramirez, Erick Aybar, J. J. Hardy, Mike Aviles, Jhonny Peralta, and Andrus among others were put to the statistical comparison described above. And once again, Elvis scored the highest.
There were six outfield positions filled due to the one-man requirement on the NL Side (Kubel, Soriano, CGonzalez, Stanton, Braun, and McCutchen). Beltran had an incredible year for the Cardinals and was an automatic pick (I think there'd be protests if I didn't have him on). Kemp may have been out for a good portion of the year, but he had better numbers than most with full seasons. Jason Heyward bounced back from a subpar 2011 season. Jay Bruce, Justin Upton, Allen Craig, Angel Pagan, or Dexter Fowler were considered as well.
So ends the presentation for my 2012 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.
Later on, I will run the simulations, just like I did last off-season, for these teams to see which one is better. I am still working on the simulations for my All-Star Team tournament (which can be found here) to determine which of my All-Star teams are the best of All-Time. It will give me something to do before the 2013 Topps cards come out. Hopefully, this can be accomplished without major headaches.
Let the debates continue.