After reading Travis' news post about the Yankees only being represented by Jeter and Granderson, I gave some thought and research to see who, of the Yankees players, deserves to be in the All Star game this year. My sources for this information are Baseball-Reference.com and Fangraphs.com and I have been looking at all the leaderboards (even the ones for peripherals and advanced stats, if available). These are my findings:
Baseball Reference Stats
The only categories that are led by a Yankee are Hits (Jeter 1st, Cano 7th) and Wins for the pitcher (Nova, tied for 1st with Harrison, Price, and Sale).
Yankees team members make appearances in other top 10s:
Overall bWAR - Cano 6th
Position Player bWAR - Cano 3rd
Batting Average - Jeter, 7th
Hits - Jeter 1st, Cano 7th
Doubles - Cano tied for 2nd
Home Runs - Granderson 3rd
Walks - Granderson tied for 7th
Pitcher bWAR - Kuroda 6th, Sabathia 7th
Wins - Nova tied for 1st
Strikeouts - Sabathia 2nd
On FanGraphs, no Yankee cracks the top 10 in wRC+ or wOBA. Granderson is 7th in ISO,
CC Sabathia is 10th in FIP, 2nd in xFIP, and 4th in pitcher fWAR.
I'll be honest and say I didn't look at the defensive metrics.
If the All Star Game is supposed to mean something (and I am wholeheartedly against this system), only the best players should be on the field and on the bench. While there is something to be said for fan favorites, it's an important game that will give home field advantage to the league that wins. If a fan wants their team to win the World Series (if they get there), it's in their best interest to vote for the best players, not their favorite players.
That being said, if any Yankees deserve to be in the All Star Game based on their performances so far this season, I would say only Cano deserves to make the trip (and not even to start, just to be on the team). Cano is the only player who is in the top 10 in multiple categories, while CC Sabathia makes a case, there are too many better pitchers in the league at this point in the season. Granderson may be a viable candidate as well, but he's not a stand-out at this point.
I'll conclude with these thoughts: I like all of the Yankees this season. I think they're all great players. I just don't think they're all having a great enough first half to really warrant All Star selection. The reason they're winning is because they are playing as a team, with different individuals stepping up at various times, not relying on any one or two or three players to carry the team this year. If the All Star Game didn't mean anything, I'd say Jeter, Granderson, Sabathia, and Cano should be there as the Yankees best players so far this season.
What are your thoughts, Pinstripe Alley?