5 Boston Red Sox Who Deserve to Play in the 2013 MLB All-Star Game
Deserving Boston Red Sox All-Stars
What is an All-Star? Is it the guys with the best stats? Is it the players that are most valuable to a team’s success? Is it the biggest “star” and the player that will put the most eyes on the game?
If we can’t even truly define an All-Star, then how can the game determine home field advantage in the World Series when a Miami Marlins player has a say in the game? But I digress; this is about the Boston Red Sox and which of them deserve to be crowned All-Stars.
There are big names on the Red Sox, but there are also big time contributors that are far from household names. Despite my lack of faith in him, Jose Iglesias has certainly made an impact, but he is far from an All-Star. There are big names that you won’t see on my list as Mike Napoli has been good, but far from the top caliber hitter he was signed to be. John Lester was certainly an All-Star to begin this season, but he has put together a streak of ugly outings and removed himself from consideration.
The back of the Red Sox bullpen has been a mess, and All-Star relievers are almost always closers. But if you are looking to win a game, shouldn’t there be guys who are used to succeeding in the 7th and 8th innings? Which of the Red Sox relievers that has had his struggles as closer will make the list as a reliever? Here are the five Red Sox I find most deserving of making the All-Star game roster.
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Time will tell if Koji Uehara's role as closer is a success, but he has been an underrated influence on the Boston Red Sox. He has been excellent in the 7th and 8th innings, but even more than that he has been a breath of fresh air. His excitement running up and down the dugout to get high fives after completing an inning is as infectious as Munenori Kawasaki has been for the Toronto Blue Jays. Lifting morale doesn’t land anyone on an All-Star roster, but if it did, Uehara would be at the top of the vote.
Jacoby Ellsbury is finally healthy and manning the spacious center field in Fenway Park for the Boston Red Sox, but he is largely being overlooked by the national media. I know, shocking, a staple in the Red Sox lineup overlooked. That's hard to believe with all the talking heads out there who drool every time the Sox and New York Yankees do anything newsworthy. He is not the MVP candidate of a few years ago as the home run power just isn’t part of his game, but he is a .350 OBP guy and is leading the majors with 32 steals. The only guy close to him in steals is Everth Cabrera, on the DL with 31, then it drops all the way to 24 with Nate McLouth.
Clay Buchholtz deserves to make the roster, but even if healthy, I really hope the Boston Red Sox choose him as the Sunday pitcher prior to the All-Star break so he doesn’t actually pitch in the game. He is undefeated this season with an ERA well under 2.00. He is as valuable of a commodity as the Red Sox have, and they just need to find a way to keep him healthy which includes keeping him out of the All-Star game despite clearly deserving to be there.
Dustin Pedroia or Robinson Cano? That is the annual debate of who is the best second baseman in baseball. As a Boston Red Sox fan, it is obvious where I stand, but regardless, there are only ever two American League second baseman that annually deserve a spot on the All-Star roster.
Is there any question David Ortiz has been the best designated hitter of the past decade? This year is no different. His batting average is over .315 with an on-base near .400. He has been the usual run generator on pace for well over 30 long balls and 100 runs driven in.