The first half of the MLB season is officially history and the All-Star teams have been selected. For the Red Sox, J.D. Martinez and Mookie Betts have been selected onto the American League All-Star roster as reserves at D.H. and outfield, respectively. But what about Rafael Devers? Why isn’t he on the All-Star team? Well, I am about to defend why Devers should have been on the All-Star team.
Most of the time, you hear about Hall of Fame hitters having an average right around .300. Well, Devers is certainly exceeding Hall of Fame numbers. He is currently hitting .329 with the Red Sox in the first half of the 2019 season. That is good for second in the American League, behind the Yankees D.J. LeMahieu. Isn’t D.J. LeMahieu in the All-Star game? Last time I checked, yes indeed he is! Bottom line is that if you are hitting above .300 at the Major League level, you should be finding a way to get that player to the All-Star game. Oh and just for what it’s worth, Devers went 4-5 again last night against the Toronto Blue Jays.
His RBI Count
Not only is Rafael Devers hitting for average, but he is also knocking in runs left and right. It seems like whenever Devers is up, he has runners on base and they’re finding their way home. So far this season, Devers has 58 RBI’s. That is good for 8th in the American League, ahead of the likes of players such as Edwin Encarnacion, Gary Sanchez, and Alex Bregman just to name a few players. Oh and by the way, Sanchez and Bregman are All-Stars this year too! Whatever. At least Devers is knocking in runs for the Red Sox and can be a reason why they can turn things around in the second half of the season.
His Defense Improving
Now let me preface this by saying that I know Devers isn’t winning a Gold Glove any time soon. I get that, believe me. But think about this. Last season, Devers was one of the leaders in the entire MLB in errors at third base with 24 total. Last year, it was scary to see a ball hit in the direction of Devers. But now, he looks a lot more confident and smooth in the field. Sure, he has 12 errors in 78 games played at third base. But the thing is, a lot of those errors came early on in the season. He has since calmed down and made plays that he wouldn’t have come close to making last year. He is starting double plays with ease, he’s making tougher plays look much easier, etc. The bottom line is that Devers continues to improve his defense which is making him more of a complete player.
Rafael Devers should be in the All-Star game, period. There are no ifs, ands, or buts about it. Devers has earned the right to take a plane ride to Cleveland and be a part of the All-Star festivities as an American League All-Star. With the way he has swung the bat so far this season and with his defense constantly getting better, Devers should be there this year. But don’t fret Red Sox fans. Devers will have a few All-Star nods under his belt before we know it.