The preliminary rosters for the 2014 MLB All-Star Game have been released. At the moment, there will be four Cincinnati Reds representing the organization at the mid-Summer Classic.
It was fairly obvious that Johnny Cueto would be a member of the club based on his stellar first-half performance. Sitting at 8-6 with a 1.99 ERA, Cueto leads all pitchers in the National League in innings pitched, and is second in all of baseball as of July 6.
Not only has Cueto been answering the bell every fifth day, he has been nearly impossible to hit. He leads all of baseball in WHIP with a 0.87 and has the lowest H/9 at 5.6.
Turn the clock back just three and a half months, and it was certain that Aroldis Chapman had a better chance of missing the entire season, then he did to make the All-Star team. His numbers jump off the page as usual (sans his ERA), but realistically, if the club is trying to win the game, who else could a manager want at the backend of his bullpen?
In just 24.2 innings, Chapman has allowed all of 12 hits. Over the course of his four full Major League seasons, his K/9 has been on a steady upward crescendo. Now at an astronomical 17.1, he has coupled that with what would be tied for a career-low in BB/9 at 2.9.
Offensively, Todd Frazier was a no-brainer selection. Leading the Reds in multiple offensive categories, Frazier has smashed 17 home runs, driven in 47 runs and swiped 13 bases.
There are already three third baseman on the roster, including Frazier, with Aramis Ramirez of the Milwaukee Brewers and Matt Carpenter of the St. Louis Cardinals joining him. On the final vote ballot, Anthony Rendon of the Washington Nationals and Casey McGehee of the Miami Marlins are eligible, leaving the hot corner a crowded position for playing time. With just Paul Goldschmidt (Arizona Diamondbacks) and Freddie Freeman (Atlanta Braves) as the first basemen, Frazier may ultimately see some time over at first for the National League.
Another crowded position was behind the plate. The fans voted in Yadier Molina of the St. Louis Cardinals, and Jonathan Lucroy of the Milwaukee Brewers was an easy selection due to his .329 batting average. Even with his two disabled lists stints thus far this season, Devin Mesoraco found a way onto the roster.
Completely mutilating the baseball, Mesoraco has turned himself into a middle of the order force. As of his selection, his average was as high as .317 with 15 home runs and 42 runs driven in. A platoon player last year, Mesoraco has grabbed the everyday catcher position by the horns.
Alfredo Simon may still hear his name called eventually, as the rules state that any pitcher who pitches for his club on Sunday may not participate.
For now, four Cincinnati Reds will be in Minnesota come July 15. The regular season has not gone to plan thus far, but the Redlegs will be well represented in just a week’s time.