The St. Louis Cardinals only had one All-Star this year and while it’s sad that there’s only one, he was the most deserving player to be there.
If you haven’t heard yet, the St. Louis Cardinals didn’t have any player lead at any position in the voting for the 2019 All-Star game in Cleveland. Worse than not having any starting players, the Cardinals didn’t have any players even voted in as a reserve.
Sadly, that means that the Cardinals get the old “Rob Manfred” voted in player. A disappointing way to get a player to the All-Star game that is usually reserved for the worst of the worst teams in the league.
In an article last week, I wrote that the Cardinals weren’t going to get many players there, saying that more or less sarcastically because at the time it was clear it was only going to be one.
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In that article, I came to the conclusion that while Marcell Ozuna has been the Cardinals’ best hitter, he was not the most deserving All-Star when compared to his peers. That honor goes to Paul DeJong.
At the time of writing last week, the top three shortstops (by wRC+) were a lot closer but after a bad week, DeJong has fallen to a wRC+ of 111 compared to Trevor Story‘s 119 and Javy Baez’s 120.
I like wRC+ because it is a great catch-all statistic that factors in park-adjusted offensive production all in one number. While DeJong’s offense may not be as great as those other two, his defense does keep him in the pack of those top shortstops.
Looking finally at overall WAR, Baez’s 3.0 WAR is just barely better than Story and DeJong’s 2.9. Clearly, DeJong is right up there with his peers at shortstop and should’ve been top-3 in voting.
Some might say that Ozuna would have been the team’s representative in Cleveland because he was the best hitter, but in general, he doesn’t even come close to comparing to the best of the best in the outfield of the National League.
Of course, all of that debate doesn’t matter anymore because of the unfortunate finger injury Ozuna suffered over the weekend.
At the end of the day, the All-Star game is just a fun day to see the best of the best in both leagues in one game on one field. It doesn’t change anything in the standings and we should all be happy for DeJong getting recognized with this honor for the first time (of hopefully many) in his career.