All-Star Hopeful (Probably Not, But Be Nice...): Michael King
A few more sterling Clay Holmes outings, and he might make this category, too.
Hoping for King to get a nod might be a fruitless endeavor, as non-closers are typically in the most thankless position possible come All-Star time. King has a better chance than most, though, considering the way his 2022 played out. He was nearly named to last summer's team, but narrowly missed out; Holmes and, somewhat unexpectedly, Jose Trevino went instead.
He entered last year's All-Star break with a 2.19 ERA and 2.22 FIP, grabbing headlines after going to the bullpen full-time as Aaron Boone's multi-inning wipeout fireman. He certainly had the advantage of first-time sheen. Unfortunately, his elbow fell apart after just two post-ASG outings, leaving that snub to be a mere footnote in his tale of woe.
This season? King has rebounded tremendously from last year's shutdown, sporting a similar 2.19 ERA through Tuesday's action and a still-sterling 1.081 WHIP and 1.4 WAR. If he doesn't get dinged for his position (and for merely repeating his breakout rather than building upon it), he has a chance. That said, he hasn't grabbed many headlines outside of New York, and appears to be headed for SnubLand yet again.