The Major League Baseball all-star game is done slightly different these days. The way the rosters are built is not the same as it was years ago. The MLB all-star rosters for the July 17th midsummer classic at Washington D.C. were announced this afternoon. We learned that only two Dodgers made the squad. Matt Kemp was voted in by the fans as a starting outfielder, and Kenley Jansen was selected as one of the reserves for the National League pitching staff. But that’s it. Dodger’s manager Dave Roberts will be managing the all-star team this year due to the Dodgers winning the National league pennant last season.
The rosters used to be much bigger than they are, but the new rules state that each League’s roster must be no more than 32 players. There are 12 pitchers and 20 position players. The players themselves vote on most of the players. Seventeen of them are selected by the players in the National League and 16 in the American League. The commissioner’s office selects five players in the American League and 7 from the National League. The rest of the players which include the starting eight for each team (starting nine for the American League because of the DH) are all voted in by the fans. That also includes the final vote, which allows one additional players to make either club.
This season only two Dodgers made the National League squad. Matt Kemp is certainly more than deserving of a starting spot. Bison finished with one of the highest vote totals in the National League. He’s batting .317 (fourth in NL) and has hit 15 home runs driven in 57 runs and posted a 143 OPS+ mark. Obviously Kemp has been fantastic, and Kenley Jansen ( the only other Dodger all-star in 2018) has pitched very well too.
Kenley did get off to a rough start, but since the first couple of weeks of the season he’s been nearly his usual untouchable self. He’s blown just one save (the game on Friday night) since April 17, and has recorded 24 saves this season to go along with his 2.34 ERA and 9.6 K/9 rate. Kenley has posted a 0.9 WHIP and struck out 45 in 42.2 innings pitched.
There are a couple of other Dodgers who I and many other people believe have made a strong case for the all-star game. Ross Stripling has had a phenomenal season. Walker Buehler has been good and of course Max Muncy, the team leader in home runs should be an all-star. It’s hard to believe but this is only Kemp’s third (2011, 2012) all-star selection. For Kenley Jansen, this is also his third (2016, 2017) all-star team. For the record Max Muncy has a chance to make the team after all. He was picked for the final vote along with four other National League players. In other words….Vote Muncy!