Pat Neshek will be the only member of the Phillies at the All-Star game, but should Aaron Altherr have joined him in South Beach?
For the fourth consecutive season, the Phillies will send just one player to the MLB All-Star game. Pat Neshek rightly got the nod to represent the team in Miami, but did one of his teammates deserve the nod as well?
Having a breakout season in Philadelphia, Aaron Altherr made a strong case to play in Miami. Had Neshek not been on the team, Altherr would have been the obvious candidate.
National League manager Joe Maddon named four reserve outfielders for the game in Miami: Giancarlo Stanton, Michael Conforto, Cody Bellinger, and Ender Inciarte.
Because Major League Baseball requires one player from each team to be on the roster, Altherr may have lost a spot. Had the Mets pitchers not fallen off the track this year, it could have allowed New York’s one player to be a starter instead of Conforto.
In all fairness, the same argument could be made conversely against Altherr had he made the roster over Neshek and another worthy National League outfielder.
Altherr’s numbers are on par, if not slightly stronger, than Conforto’s this season.
Average numbers on a bad team in the case of Altherr are ultimately the reason fans are having the discussion of whether he deserved a trip to Miami. It would have been a great experience for Altherr, but even if the one player from each team rule wasn’t in place, he wouldn’t be heading to Miami.
Chalk it up to Altherr having a strong breakout season in Philadelphia, and hope there are more opportunities down the road to make the mid-summer classic.