All-Star debate season is upon us and 6 Dodgers have made the cut

The first phase ballot of All-Star voting was released on Tuesday and 6 Dodger position players have a legitimate chance of playing in Coors Field on July 13th.

Via Dodgers Twitter account 

Have you recently received a third-degree burn from your elbow lightly tapping the seatbelt when entering your car? When leaving said car, do you have the outline of a seat belt going all the way from your right shoulder to your left hip on your t-shirt? If you’re dealing with these cataclysmic heat issues, then that means it must be time to start debating about the 2021 All-Star game in Coors Field.

Before diving into which Dodgers we should and could possibly see in July, make sure to vote here https://www.mlb.com/all-star/ballot. If 2020 taught us anything, it’s that your voice matters. 

Chris Taylor and Mookie Betts

Chris Taylor’s currently sitting at 6th in voting while slashing .275/.389/.865 with 9 home runs. His 48 runs scored in the NL trails only Winker (49) and Acuña (52). Taylor becoming an All-Star is finally no longer as secretive as the tomfoolery that’s been going on down in Area 51. Over the past couple of weeks, the campaign has been gaining loads of traction on social media, and after his solo shot last night, the floodgates have opened.

 

 

 

As of now, the starting three outfielders in the NL are Ronald Acuña, Jesse Winker, and Nick Castellaños. Barring any drastic slumps, it will most likely remain that way, and I have no problem with that because Taylor doesn’t have the power and slugging % numbers to keep up with those 3. 

The two guys ahead of Taylor in votes are Juan Soto and teammate Mookie Betts. Besides the weight those two names hold, Taylor should be able to leapfrog them. 

2021 has been incredibly pedestrian compared to previous seasons from Juan Soto. In the humdinger, albeit shortened season, he slashed .351/.490/1.185, leading MLB in all those categories nonetheless, is now slashing .267/.398/.832. Takeaway OBP and Taylor remains ahead of Soto in all major categories.

In all honesty, Chris Taylor deserves that 4th spot over Mookie Betts. By no means am I calling Mookie awful or saying that the Dodgers lost the trade, but Taylor is simply having a better year than him. Playing in a big market like Los Angeles and having a resume that includes 4 Silver Sluggers, 5 Gold Gloves, and 2 World Series rings puts him in this position. Even if Mookie and Taylor’s stats end up similar to what they are now, Mookie will probably end up higher in the vote, and that’s what happens when you’re a superstar and one of the most fan-friendly players in the game as well.

Max Muncy

In the spring of 2017, Maxwell Steven Muncy was out of baseball and taking hacks at his old high school Keller High just outside of Dallas. Flash forward to 2021, and after the first phase of voting is set to start at 1st base for the NL.

 

 

While he just landed on the 10-day IL with a right oblique strain, he’s been everything and then some. I could do my best impression of Mark Twain or Ernest Hemmingway to express how dominant he’s been, but his numbers speak for themself. 

Muncy’s slash line is .264/.418/.947 and leads the NL in WAR position players (3.4), OBP (.418), and BB with an astounding 46. Second place is a three-way tie between Freddie Freeman, Tommy Pham, and Juan Soto with 40. 

Muncy has lucked out to a certain extent because no first baseman in the NL has been having an incredible year. Freddie Freeman’s in second place with a .237 AVG, 15 HR, 35 RBI, and a .815 OBPS, and Anthony Rizzo is in third place with a .264 AVG, 8 Hr, 30 RBI, and .815 OBPS. 

Dave Roberts hasn’t released a timetable on his return and made the move seem prudent, so it doesn’t seem like this is a significant crisis for the MVP candidate. 

In the following weeks, the second and third spots of the ballot could look different than they do now, but Muncy trotting out to first to start and sending moonshots seems inevitable on July 13th.

Gavin Lux  

If there were any player to measle their way out of the vote, it would most likely be Gavin Lux. While he’s made drastic improvements from last season, when the Dodgers kept him off the World Series roster and decided they were better without him, it just might not be enough. 

He currently sits at third in voting for second basemen with a slash line of .244/.302/.701. However, after struggling out the gate, he’s gone on to be a solid replacement for Corey Seager at short and delivered one of the great pimp jobs in Chavez Ravine history.

With guys like Jazz Chisholm, Kolten Wong, and Jake Cronenworth putting up similar numbers and Jean Segura burgeoning, it’s pretty clear that Lux’s first appearance might not come just yet. 

Justin Turner

Big red is at it again this season, and fans from around baseball should reward his consistency. Justin Turner has just become allergic to doing his job incorrectly. 

 

He is at third place in the vote, and although Austin Riley and Evan Longoria are putting up adjacent stats, Turner has way too much from Dodger faithful to let him slip away. 

This is where voting politics come into play because few third basemen have as much love from the home crowd as Justin Turner. After last season Turner has put himself in retired jersey conversation, and fans couldn’t bear to see him not get the respect he deserves. 

2021 isn’t the season of a lifetime for JT, but with a slash line of .278/.369/.853 and 12 home runs, it should be enough to earn him his second All-Star appearance. 

When Matt isn’t blogging about the Dodgers, he’s most likely yelling at his TV because of them.

Follow Matt on Twitter @Mattweiner20