The Chicago Cubs have several players that are frontrunners in the first stage of the All-Star voting. Which players will make it to Cleveland?
The baseball season is moving all too fast, and All-Star voting is already well underway. It’s likely that, once again, the Chicago Cubs will have multiple players heading to the mid-season showcase.
With the wealth of talented players in the NL, the competition for the Cubbies will be tight. However, there are a few standouts that are likely to make an appearance at Progressive Field in Cleveland.
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Baez has picked up right where he left off from his MVP runner-up season last year. He currently leads all shortstops in the NL with 16 long balls and sports an impressive 131 OPS+ to boot.
Once again, Baez has dazzled with the glove, allowing for eight defensive runs saved thus far at the shortstop position. His range as a defender has made him stand out on a Cubs team known for a good defense.
Contreras, on the other hand, has taken incredible strides since he was an All-Star last year.
His discipline at the plate has improved considerably, bringing his OBP to the highest mark of his career at .389 while still hitting for average and power.
Behind the plate, Contreras stands with a 38% caught stealing percentage, putting him among the top ten catchers in said stat. While his pitch framing still needs improvement, he is still a solid backstop defensively.
Though these two are the most likely candidates for the All-Star game (especially with both handily leading All-Star voting), the Chicago Cubs have a few more players expected to make the team.
- Anthony Rizzo: Rizzo’s 2019 has been nothing short of stellar. He’s still the same Gold Glove-caliber defender at first, but his offense has been the main talking point with a 146 OPS+ and a club-leading 17 home runs.
- Kyle Hendricks: If he makes the team, this will mark Hendricks’s first appearance in the All-Star game in his career: an honor he is incredibly deserving of. While he has solid stats for the year, his month of May stands out: 44 2/3 IP in six games with a 1.81 ERA and an 0.739 (!) WHIP.
Of course, we are still a ways away from the All-Star game, and all of this could change. It would not be surprising to see players like Jon Lester, Kris Bryant, and Cole Hamels make that final push that gets them over the hump into pure All-Star territory.
Bryant may find it especially difficult given the wealth of stellar third basemen in the NL. It is not too much to expect, however, to see a hot streak push him over the other contenders.
Whatever the case, make sure to continue voting to give the Chicago Cubs’ best players a chance to shine in Cleveland. Voting for the All-Star game closes June 21 at 3:59 PM ET, after which a special election will take place among the top voted candidates to determine the starters.