All-Star voting opened up this past Friday online, which has us all thinking; who of our current Yankees has the best shot at making the team? The New York Yankees are notorious for filling up the All Star lineup with members of their team, and this year, it wouldn’t be surprising to see them do it again. While you may not see your familiar Yankee faces at Target Field this year (Mariano Rivera, Robinson Cano, Alex Rodriguez, etc.), there will be some new ones with hopes of becoming regulars to represent New York. Lets take a look at which of the Yankees have the best shot at playing in Minnesota this year.
Shortstop – Derek Jeter: Can anyone not see him making the team this year? Jeter has become a mainstay in the All-Star lineup since the 90′s (13x AS), and is routinely voted in by the fans as the starting shortstop. In his final season, it would be a crime to hold the Captain off the team. This year, he has put himself in a good position to earn his spot statistically; through 20 games, he is hitting .276 with an OBP of .360, while setting the table nicely for the middle of the order. At close to 40-years-old, you just have to keep your fingers crossed he stays healthy.
Catcher – Brian McCann: The big free agent catcher picked up this off-season got off to a relatively slow start. McCann has been a perennial All-Star in the National League with the Braves (7x AS) so I would expect that to continue over in the American League with the Yankees. None of the catchers have really stood out thus far with the exception of divisional rival Matt Wieters, so McCann has got some breathing room to improve his game over the next month and a half. His three home runs this season will surely increase with more games at The Stadium with that short porch in right.
Outfield – Jacoby Ellsbury and Carlos Beltran: These two new Yankees’ faces will not be new faces to the All-Star Game. Although Ellsbury only has one previous All-Star appearance, he is widely regarded as one of the games premiere center fielders. He has gotten off to a great start in his first season with the Yanks, hitting .312 with an OBP of .370 and 8 stolen bases. Ellsbury has had a knack for coming up big for the Yankees early on; he had a great first game in his return to Fenway to set the tone for the rivalry this year, and most recently scored the game-winning run last night in the Yankees’ win over the Angels. I think the fans can push him over the edge to get him into the game, but the way he’s playing thus far, he deserves it. As for Beltran, he finally got his wish and is a New York Yankee. The 8x All Star is hitting .275 with 5 home runs and 13 RBI and is slugging .538. Like the rest of the Yankee lefty hitters, he too will benefit from the short porch in right and add to those power numbers before July 15th rolls around.
Pitchers – Masahiro Tanaka: The rookie sensation is one of the top stories of Major League Baseball through the first four weeks. Tanaka has been dominant starting off 3-0 with a 2.27 ERA in his first five starts. In 35.2 innings, Tanaka has struck out 46 batters (third most ever by a rookie in their first five starts) and only has walked 6 batters (four of which came last night against the Angels). He has taken over as the new Yankee ace at 25-years-old and has easily the largest fan base voting for him back home in Japan. If he continues to be as dominant the next month in a half, maybe you even see him as the starter.
Dark Horse Prediction – David Robertson: As Mo’s replacement, it is hard to live up to expectations. Robertson got unlucky early on, going down early with a groin injury in early April, but the Yankees are happy to have him back. In his six appearances this year, he has only given up two hits in six innings without surrendering a run. He has four saves on this young season and with the way the Yankees are playing this year, he will have plenty of opportunities for more.
You can vote for your favorite Yankees to help get them into this year’s All-Star Game by clicking here!