Monday, July 4, 2011

Player Tied For NL Lead In WAR Not On The All-Star Team

Bill Gilbert pointed this out to me. Here are the leaders from Baseball Reference:

1. McCutchen (PIT) 5.1
Kemp (LAD) 5.1
3. Halladay (PHI) 4.6
4. Braun (MIL) 4.3
5. Reyes (NYM) 4.2
6. Hamels (PHI) 4.0
7. Lee (PHI) 3.8
8. Jurrjens (ATL) 3.7
9. Bourn (HOU) 3.5
10. Kershaw (LAD) 3.4

At Fangraphs, McCutchen is 2nd to Jose Reyes. Anyone know how often this happens, that the leader in WAR does not make the All-star team?

The Pirates have one all-star, Hanrahan, a reliever. Maybe Bochy thought that is what the NL needed. But McCutchen is having a better year than Beltran (not to pick on him) at least according to WAR, 5.1-2.7. And McCutchen has been good the last two years and had more WAR last year than Beltran. The Mets have at least one all-star anyway, Reyes. So McCutchen could have easily been picked within the current rules.

McCutchen gets alot of his value from a high OBP (.393) and his defensive WAR (1.4), which is 2nd in the league. The Giants have only played the Pirates 3 times this year, back in late April and McCutchen went 0 for 13. He has only a .180 career AVG with just 1 HR in 61 ABs against the Giants. So maybe that is why Bochy does not recognize how good he is.

McCutchen is not in the top 10 in HRs, RBIs or AVG. He has not won a Gold Glove and is only in his 3rd year. He has never batted .300, hit 30 HRs nor had 100 RBIs. So I guess he just does not have a great reputation.

His Baseball Reference page shows him with 4.0 WAR last year, which is very good. Yet when I used the Play Index to find the leaders in WAR, it shows him with just 3.7 (good for 26th) among position players.

He also got off to a slow start, batting just .219 in April. Then he hit .275 in May and .347 in June. He is 7th in OPS+ at 150.

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