Do the Phillies Deserve More than One All Star? – Phillies Nation

Do the Phillies Deserve More than One All Star?

Chase Utley leads all NL second basemen after the first round of ballots for the All Star Game. Following a scorching April and in the midst of a solid May, Utley is more than deserving. But can the same be said about any other Phillies?

Corey and I talked about this a few weeks back on Phillies Nation TV and there’s no clear-cut answer.

Jonathan Papelbon’s season has been impressive following a rocky start in Texas. His 13 saves are 7th best in the NL and his 1.86 ERA is 5th among RP’s that have at least five saves. While his numbers certainly cannot be overlooked, there is a bevy of relievers who could be picked.

Huston Street could be the Padres lone selection. He has 15 saves and just six walks in 20 innings. Rafael Soriano has a miniscule 0.86 ERA and a WHIP below one. Francisco Rodriguez has had a rebirth in Milwaukee. Steve Cishek plays in relative anonymity in Miami, but has struck out 27 and walked only six. Also, Craig Kimbrel is a candidate every year. Even Jonathan Broxton has been exceptional, fired filling in for an injured Aroldis Chapman, then sliding into late-inning work, which still counts in the eyes of those who make the decisions.

At shortstop, Jimmy Rollins has a solid chance of making the team for the first time since 2005. The crop of shortstops in the NL in underwhelming this season, sans Troy Tulowitzki, so this is certainly possible. Among qualifiers at that position, J-Roll ranks 2nd in OPS. However, he’ll have to fend off Jhonny Peralta, Hanley Ramirez, and Starlin Castro.

Carlos Ruiz is the final Phillies who has a real opportunity to play at Target Field this year. His underrated presence at the plate should not be overlooked the roster makers. Among qualified catchers, Ruiz ranks 6th in the majors with a 1.0 WAR. His .387 OBP ranks 2nd.

While it’s relatively clear Utley is headed to Minnesota, who goes with him is not.



  1. Dave

    May 30, 2014 at 11:47 am

    The Phillies don’t deserve to have 1 All Star, but that’s the rule.

    • Hogey's Role

      May 30, 2014 at 12:06 pm

      Just because the team plays like crap doesn’t mean that there can’t be individual players having great years…

      Utley, hands down deserves the start at second for the all star game…. Outside of him I think papelbon has been pretty worthy of a selection, after his one bad outing this year he’s been very solid…

    • Dave

      May 30, 2014 at 1:02 pm

      I was being slightly sarcastic. Utley definitely deserves to go.

  2. schmenkman

    May 30, 2014 at 12:56 pm

    Rollins does deserve to go, he’s been the 2nd best shortstop in the NL overall (by fWAR):

    St. Louis’ Jhonny Peralta is close behind Rollins, so it will be interesting to see what NL mgr Mike Matheny does with that spot.

    • lefty

      May 30, 2014 at 1:34 pm

      IMO He’s not going to pick Rollins over his guy if it’s close.

  3. Cary Beavers

    May 30, 2014 at 2:13 pm

    What bugs me is the other closers mentioned. How many of them have payroll-busting contracts like Pap? Amaro can’t find anyone with true value. He only knows how to throw huge dollars at someone. Closers can be found for relatively cheap deals, but RAJ is incapable. Pat Gillick’s retirement was the beginning of the end.

    • George

      May 30, 2014 at 2:38 pm

      Pat Gillick’s one major relief signing, Brad Lidge, wasn’t exactly cheap, and after he got his big extension, he pretty much sucked. Maybe part of the bullpen situation is that Gillick has made some lousy recommendations in his current role as advisor.

    • schmenkman

      May 30, 2014 at 2:39 pm

      Just for context, lots of relievers are signed to cheap deals every year. Some of them do well and wind up in All-star discussions, while many others fail. Predicting which ones will do well in a given year is the tough part. If GMs could predict they’d do well, those relievers wouldn’t be left signing cheap deals.

      The ones who can do it year in and year out are few, and Papelbon was one of those at the time he was signed, and if you plan to contend, he was a fine one to go after rather than risk it with either a cheap deal or one of your prospects.

      Agree that Papelbon’s contract was too big, too long, signed too soon, etc., but just looking at the few cheap ones that managed to exceed expectations isn’t the whole story.

      • Hogey's Role

        May 30, 2014 at 3:50 pm

        Bullpens and relievers themselves, are always volatile, constantly up and down… It just seems like our bullpen has sucked for quite a while now

      • George

        May 31, 2014 at 10:55 am

        The real problem with the Papelbon signing was not the average anual value, even if that was a little higher than it should have been (although at the time, there were others making about high dollars). The big problem was the length of the deal. With the volatility of the relief market, and the likely slide out of contention by aging veterans, it should have been shorter. The initial year didn’t really tie up the payroll, but the subsequent years of that deal are already having an affect on what the team can spend to re-tool. And with the trend of other teams to spend less on closers, the Phils are now stuck because they’ll find only a tiny market, or no market at all for an expensive reliever.

  4. Andrew from waldorf

    May 30, 2014 at 3:36 pm

    If you guys want Utley and Rollins

    Why not howard

    I am being laughed at about the 9th inning last night.

    Made that turd reliever look like Rivera.

    K K K and laughable at that.

    But if Utley and Rollins go why not take Howard?

    Surprising to me that such an all star laiden team could be as horrible as they are and have been for years.

    Take Halladay too.

    Just because like when Magic Johnson was retired and played in the all star game.

  5. Phillies Fan from Germany

    May 30, 2014 at 4:33 pm

    Andrew, your Problem is that in your bashing you are Not able to differentiate at all. Utley and Rolling are playing Really well (and their contracts seem to work out just Fine and could also be justified very easely at the Time of the signing) while Howard is playing Bad (and so is his contract, both with his actual Performance AND at the Point of the signing).

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