Last update12:10:25 AM

Back Pro Sports News MLB Brewers Have Multiple All-Star Candidates

Brewers Have Multiple All-Star Candidates

User Rating: / 0

Despite the recent struggles of the Milwaukee Brewers, several players have been having career years in Brew City and appear poised to send at least four players to Phoenix for the 2011 All-Star Game. These performances are a huge reason why the Brewers sit at 41-35 and atop the National League Central. Let's take a look at the sure-fire All-Stars that Milwaukee will provide the Midsummer Classic as well as few that should at least be in the discussion.

*OF - Ryan Braun

Braun has put up some of the best numbers among National League outfielders and has been the leading vote getting among NL players since voting began. He is fifth among outfielders in batting average (.309), sixth in home runs (15), second in RBIs (54) and in the top five overall in slugging and on-base percentage. In other words, Brauny will most definitely be representing the National League in the outfield, most likely alongside two St. Louis Cardinals in Lance Berkman and Matt Holliday. Who should be joining Mr. Braun in the outfield? For one, Dodgers standout Matt Kemp (20 HR, 52 RBI, .328 AVG) should be the leading vote getter as well as receiving some MVP discussion, although the Dodgers' struggles could hinder Kemp's chances at such an award - Kemp will certainly find himself on the roster. To fill out the outfield, Berkman's numbers (17 HR, 51 RBI, .307 AVG) and his incredible bounce back from last season make him deserving of a spot in the starting nine.

*1B - Prince Fielder

MVP anybody? Along with Kemp, Fielder's performance thus far should merit him some MVP talk as we delve deeper into the 2011 season. He is currently tied for first in the NL in home runs (20) and leads the league in RBIs (63). To go along with those gaudy numbers, Fielder also lies just outside the top ten in batting average (.306) and has a ridiculous .426 OBP and 1.033 OPS. With Albert Pujols likely out with his fractured forearm come time for the All-Star Game, Fielder very well should receive the starting nod at first base. Of course, the MVP pedigree of Reds' first baseman Joey Votto (9 HR, 43 RBI, .440 OBP) could earn him the starting gig as well. Ryan Howard (16 HR, 61 RBI, .357 OBP) should also make the roster at the loaded 1st base position in the National League.

*2B - Rickie Weeks

An alarming statistic was brought to my attention recently. Weeks ranks third among all position players in baseball in WAR (Wins Above Replacement) over the past couple seasons. This is one of the many new stats that come with Sabermetrics and I haven't a clue what many of them mean, but in short, WAR stands for how many more wins a player is worth at his position for a team compared to a replacement, or bench, player. Not only this, but Weeks leads all second basemen in home runs (14) from theĀ lead-off spot and has the best OBP as well. He is far and away deserving of the starting slot for the National League, but Brandon Phillips (5 HR, 36 RBI, .279 AVG) currently leads the fan voting - although Weeks is hot on his tail. Either way, the two all-stars who should emerge at second are Weeks and Phillips.

*CS - John Axford

The man. The myth. The mustache. The Ax man sports one of the best 'staches in the bigs and is also one of the best closers baseball has had to offer over the past two seasons. His 19 saves are only good enough for sixth in the NL, but his save percentage is also tied for sixth as of today. Should the NL take five or six closers to the All-Star Game like they have in the past, Axford should make the squad when considering his 2.70 ERA. There will definitely be some competition for these spots - some others who can expect to make the roster are Huston Street (COL), fellow beard fanatic Brian Wilson (SF), Joel Hanrahan (PIT), Ryan Madson (PHI) and Heath Bell (SD).

- - - - -

SP - Shaun Marcum

The pitching scene in the National League - both starting and relief - is a massive log jam. So many players deserving of a spot, and so many who will be left out. A few weeks ago, Marcum (7-2, 2.95 ERA) appeared poised to make the roster, but a hip injury has hindered his performance and he may fall victim to the pitching boom that the NL has seen. Fellow starter Yovani Gallardo has had a few starts get away for him; otherwise, he would also be in the discussion for the All-Star Game. Among those who will compete along with Marcum for an invite are Jair Jurrjens (ATL), Tommy Hanson (ATL), Cole Hamels (PHI), Roy Halladay (PHI), Cliff Lee (PHI), Jholys Chacin (COL) and Ian Kennedy (ARZ).

C - Jonathan Lucroy

Lucroy missed the first ten games of the season with a broken pinky but started off hot, putting up numbers that kept him among the top NL catchers. However, his production has dropped off and although his statistics (7 HR, 32 RBI, .275 AVG) may have been good enough to make the All-Star game in years past, he will most likely give way to Brain McCann (ATL) and all-star regular Yadier Molina (STL).

Realistically, the Brewers should expect to send four players to Arizona this July and could even reach for five should Marcum be able to battle through his hip injury, keep his ERA low and earn a few more victories. Five all-stars would be a franchise record for Milwaukee, a possible foreshadowing for what lies in store for the 2011 Brewers.

Add comment

All Time Popular

Auburn: New "Thug U"

Must Read - Forum

NBA Finals