Though the 2014 All-Star Game is still about a month away it’s never too early to start examining the different players from each team who deserve to be All-Stars. The San Francisco Giants certainly have players worthy of being All-Stars, considering the fact that they have the best record in baseball and have quite a few players performing at an elite level so far this season.
The first player is Angel Pagan. Pagan might not make the All-Star team based upon the number of talented outfielders in the National League. However, there hasn’t been a better leadoff hitter than Pagan. He’s been a catalyst for the Giants, plays incredible defense and should easily get consideration. Pagan leads all National League leadoff hitters with a 305 average, second in OBP at 355 behind only Matt Carpenter of the St Louis Cardinals and is also 10th in the National league in stolen bases.
The next position player who deserves to be an All-Star is Michael Morse. He’s batting 293, he’s fifth in the National League with 13 home runs, third with 44 RBI’S and fourth in slugging percentage at 553 going into today’s game against the Colorado Rockies. He’s been one of the most consistent outfielders in the National League when it comes to run producing and power hitting. Morse has been a welcome edition to the Giants lineup and has consistently driven in runs. He should make the All-Star Game based upon the stats listed above, but with all the talented outfielders in the National League he may not make it.
Now moving on to the pitching. The Giants have two starters who should be All-Stars as well as a reliever who probably won’t make it but should, based upon his overall numbers. These three guys have had a lot to do with the Giants incredible success this season.
The first, Tim Hudson, has been the Giants best pitcher ever since he took the ball back in April. With his win on Thursday he now sits at 7-2 with a 1.81 ERA, which is first in the majors. He’s attacking hitters, getting outs and showing that he still has the ability to pitch like the Hall of Fame player that he is. Without Hudson who knows where the Giants would be with other guys in their rotation being inconsistent and not showing the form that the Giants expected. Hudson has already been an All-Star three times and an appearance this year seems likely as well.
The next starter, Madison Bumgarner, like Hudson has All-Star numbers. However, with so many elite National League pitchers he could potentially be left off the squad, although he has a 8-4 record with a 2.67 ERA on the season. Those numbers are Ace caliber and over his last 8 starts he’s been pitching like the Ace that the Giants made him this season with only 13 earned runs allowed in 54 innings. He’s rediscovered his fastball command, and every time he and Hudson are on the mound the Giants feel like they have a great chance to win. The credentials that Bumgarner has should make him an All-Star every season.
The last pitcher is a reliever who has been the best reliever out of anybody in baseball this season. His name is Jean Machi, a 32 year old career minor leaguer who’s finally been given his shot to pitch in the big leagues. He’s certainly made the most of it. He’s dazzled, confused, befuddled hitters or whatever word you want to use to describe it with the use of his forkball. That pitch can get ground balls and strikeouts. He has given up 1 earned run in 29.1 innings to the tune of an incredible 0.31 ERA and a fantastic whip of .75. He has a couple of saves, has a lot of holds, and has been key in getting out of jams. He’s been everything you’d want a late inning reliever to be. What hurts him and what will prohibit him from making the All-Star team is that he isn’t a closer. Traditionally, there are not that many set up men who are chosen for the game even if they have numbers like Machi’s. Whether he makes it or not, he’s been a revelation for the Giants and has developed into one of the most trusted relievers in all of baseball.
As the best team in baseball, the Giants should get the honor of having the most players in the All-Star game, but that’s usually not how it works as every team has to have at least one player in the game. Even with that the Giants should potentially get at least three players in the game, maybe four depending upon injuries and things like that. Of course it all depends upon how well the players mentioned perform in the month leading up to the game.