When you have the fewest wins in baseball and a collection of players, most of whom are regressing or simply not playing great, you can’t expect to be well represented at the MLB All-Star Game.
It feels as if, for the third straight year, there will be only one Phillie at the Midsummer Classic. And the player most likely to go in 2017 is not exactly an inspired no choice.
You could make an argument for outfielder Aaron Altherr, who is batting .287/.371/.524, with 9 homers, 31 RBIs and 27 runs scored. But among NL outfielders, he’s tied for 14th with Atlanta’s Matt Kemp and Milwaukee’s Herman Perez in WAR (1.0).
Cesar Hernandez is a decent candidate. After a blisteringly hot April, Hernandez has cooled in May and June, but his overall numbers are still OK for a second baseman. He’s batting .282/.341/.406 with five homers and 40 runs scored, and his WAR of 1.2 is tied for third-best in the National League. You could certainly make a case for him.
But at the moment, relief pitcher Pat Neshek appears to be the most likely choice. And no offense to Neshek, but it would be pretty depressing if the only guy going to the All Star Game from the Phillies was a veteran middle reliever on a one-year deal who is likely to get shipped out at the trade deadline.
Neshek has a 0.82 ERA in 22 innings, and appears to be the new closer for the Phils, at least temporarily. On the latest Felske Files podcast, John Stolnis spoke to 94 WIP’s Joe Giglio about Neshek and the likelihood that he will be the team’s lone representative at the Midsummer Classic next month.
Also discussed on this episode...
- Roman Quinn is on the shelf again. Can he be relied on as a major part of this team’s future?
- Two young starters most expected to help lead this team into the future, Aaron Nola and Jerad Eickhoff, were called into the manager’s office and told to do better.
- Nola responded, Eickhoff didn’t.
- How worried should we be about Eickhoff?
- Should the Phillies actively look to move a player like Odubel Herrera and some prospects to acquire a young starter with ace potential like Chris Archer or Sonny Gray?
- Why the Phils probably won’t sign a big-time arm, like Yu Darvish, in free agency.
- Which Phillie has the most trade value, and which are the most likely to get moved at the trade deadline?
- Jay Floyd of PhoulBallz.com stops by the show to discuss prospects.
- What to make of Quinn’s injury, and good news for Zach Eflin.
- Thoughts on J.P. Crawford, who is struggling again.
- What has been the difference for Nick Williams to play more consistently this season?
- Jorge Alfaro’s defense is improving after a stern conversation with Dusty Wathan.
- How are the really young pitchers doing in Lakewood and Clearwater? Any aces on the horizon?
- The MLB Draft is next week. Here are some players that could wind up being drafted by the Phillies
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