ALPB Deserving All-Star Starters

ALPB Deserving All-Star Starters

By: Will Thompson

With the Atlantic League All-Star game just 14 days away, certain players have separated themselves from the rest of the league. The players I am going to highlight have clearly shown that they are deserving to represent their division at Peoples Bank Park in York, PA in just two short weeks. Before I get started, let us go over the criteria I used. For position players, a candidate had to have played in 30 games or more to be considered. Starting pitchers needed to start in at least 6 games to be considered. So without further ado, let us start with the Liberty Division.

Starting Pitcher: David Kubiak (SOM)

This choice is an absolute no-brainer for me. Kubiak has been the best pitcher in the Atlantic League all season and is well deserving of an all-star game start. The 29 year old leads the league with a 1.19 ERA and in strikeouts with 71. No other starting pitcher in the Liberty Division really comes close to Kubiak’s numbers, making him the easy choice.

Catcher: Mike Ohlman (SOM)

Ohlman has had a great season at the plate so far with Somerset, slashing .303/.393/.430 with 2 HR in 42 games. His defense behind the plate is spotty at times, but it is certainly hard to ignore those great offensive numbers from the catcher position. Ducks catcher Hector Sanchez is the runner-up here and should make the all-star game as a reserve.

First Baseman: David Washington (LI)

Although his torrid home run pace has slowed down a little bit in recent weeks, David Washington has put his power on display in the first half, launching 16 homers already and nearly slugging .600. He has taken a step forward this season in the batting average department as well, improving from .226 last season to .270 so far in 2019. Although Washington has some quality competition in the Liberty Division for this spot, he should certainly get the starting nod.

Second Baseman: Tyler Ladendorf (HP)

Ladendorf should definitely get the start at second base for the Liberty Division, as he has really been the only one at his position to excel at the plate so far. In the first half, he slashed .273/.372/.478 with 9 homers in 52 games. The 31 year old veteran is the easy choice here.

Third Baseman: Jonathan Galvez (NB)

On a team with big names, Jonathan Galvez has seemed to fly under the radar. However, the 28 year old has had the best season of his professional career in 2019 and deserves to start in the all-star game. So far, he has slashed a terrific .324/.357/.585 with 11 homers in 51 games. Patriots 3rd baseman Will Kengor is close here, but Galvez gets the nod because of his significant advantage in the power department.

Shortstop: Alexi Amarista (NB)

The seven year MLB veteran Alexi Amarista has had a pretty good season thus far, especially in the power department. In 56 games, he slashed .270/.321/.473 with 11 homers. At a position where there isn’t really another good option, Amarista gets the nod for me.

Outfield: Alejandro De Aza (NB)

In what should be a stacked Liberty Division outfield, 10 year major leaguer Alejandro De Aza should be starter. Even at age 35, he has raked this season with the Bees, leading the league in batting average at .344. The veteran has hit 6 homers to go along with that stellar batting average and is an easy choice to start the all star game.

Outfield: Quincy Latimore (HP)

Even though Quincy Latimore went to Mexico for a few weeks, his numbers still show he deserves to start the all-star game, since he has returned to High Point. In 32 games, he has slashed an outstanding .292/.363/.592 with 9 homers. Since he barely made it over my minimum games played mark and has the stats to back it up, he deserves to start in York.

Outfield: Bijan Rademacher (NB)

Rademacher is another perfect example of a guy on the Bees who has definitely flown under the radar this season. Even though he got off to a slow start, he has had a great month of June to bring his slash line up to .273/.384/.470 with 5 homers in 42 games. Ducks outfielder Daniel Fields was very close here but his low batting average of .231 helped give Rademacher the edge.

DH: Viosergy Rosa (HP)

The Rockers hoped that Viosergy Rosa could be the guy to replace the big bat of Dante Bichette Jr. when he was purchased, and he certainly has not disappointed. The 29 year old is still flying under the radar in my opinion, despite the fact he has slashed .267/.400/.514 with 7 homers in 32 games. Will Kengor was very close here but I decided to go with Rosa because of his advantage in OBP and SLG.

Freedom Division:

Starting Pitcher: Craig Stem (SOMD)

Despite playing for a Blue Crabs team that has struggled for most of the first half, RHP Craig Stem has been a bright spot. He is second in the league in ERA at 2.56 and has been the undisputed ace for Southern Maryland. Lancaster Barnstormers ace Kyle Davies was the runner-up for this spot.

Catcher: James Skelton (York)

After being traded by the New Britain Bees a week into the season, seven year Atlantic League veteran James Skelton has proved that it was a mistake for the Bees to get rid of him. The 33 year old catcher has slashed an impressive .287/.395/.475 with 4 homers in 36 games so far this season. Lancaster catcher Anderson De La Rosa has also had a great year, but might have to settle for a reserve spot in this year’s midsummer classic.

First Baseman: Telvin Nash (York)

The 28 year old slugger certainly hasn’t disappointed for the Revs this year, slashing .254/.373/.590 with 18 homers in 57 games. Nash also recently became the York Revolution’s franchise record holder for homers with the team. Nash seems like a pretty easy choice to start the all-star game in his home ballpark.

Second Baseman: Dan Gamache (LAN)

The Barnstormers have had an uncharacteristically bad first half, but the performance of second baseman Dan Gamache has certainly been a bright spot. The 28 year old has had an outstanding first half, slashing .316/.388/.515 with 5 homers in 54 games. With those numbers, he’s a pretty easy choice to start at second base.

Third Baseman: Henry Castillo (York)

Henry Castillo has played all over the diamond this season, but has played more third base as of late, so in this case, I consider him a third baseman. Castillo is only 24 years old, but has had a great year at the plate so far, slashing .299/.333/.513 with 6 homers in 49 games. Sugar Land’s Juan Silverio was also considered here, but probably should be on the Freedom Division team as a reserve.

Shortstop: Michael Martinez (LAN)

At a position with not a lot of good options, Barnstormers shortstop Michael Martinez seems to be the easy choice. The 36 year old has had a solid year in Lancaster so far, slashing .292/.331/.416 with 3 homers in 38 games. No other shortstop in the Freedom Division has numbers close to Martinez, so he's a pretty easy choice here.

Outfield: Melky Mesa (York)

After a slow start to the season, Melky Mesa has picked it up in a big way and has looked more like the player Revs fans are used to seeing. Despite the rough patch in May, he now holds a slash line of .303/.331/.509 with 10 homers in 55 games this season. He has certainly been one of three best outfielders in the Freedom Division in the first half.

Outfield: Cory Vaughn (SOMD)

Even though the Blue Crabs offense has been by far the worst in the league, the great first half of outfielder Cory Vaughn has certainly been a bright spot. The 30 year old has slashed .271/.380/.514 with 11 homers in 56 games so far. With that consistent power, Vaughn definitely deserves a starting spot in the all-star game.

Outfield: Caleb Gindl (LAN)

Caleb Gindl went on a power surge at the beginning of the season and although he has slowed down a bit in that regard, he has still had a great first half at the plate. In 55 games so far this season, the 30 year old slashed .306/.394/.520 with 8 homers.

DH: Joey Terdoslavich (LAN)

Joey Terdoslavich has also been a bright spot for a struggling Barnstormers team, slashing .279/.352/.476 with 10 homers in 54 games this season. His teammate, catcher Anderson De La Rosa, and York catcher Isaias Tejada were also considered for this spot but they lack the power that Terdoslavich possess.

Note: All stats are accurate as of the conclusion of the games on June 25th
*All opinions expressed are those of the of the author*