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Wednesday, July 08, 2015

The 10 best active MLB players who have never made an All-Star team

Shoulda played for the Royals, I guess.

1. Shin-Soo Choo

If you made a “most underrated players” list from 2008 through 2013 and didn’t include Choo, they broke down your door and took your children away. Everyone knew that Choo was underrated, and that almost made him overrated, but just the thought of him being overrated made him underrated again. For two straight years in Cleveland, Choo hit over .300, was among the league leaders in on-base percentage, and slugged close to .500.

Choo’s problem: too consistent. He never had one of those wacky first halves, where he’d hit 15 homers and get on base 48 percent of the time, only to regress to the mean in the second half. He was always calm and cool, hitting for average (but not that high), getting on base (but not that much), and hitting the occasional dinger (but not that many). He probably deserved a selection or two, but there was always an outfielder who wasn’t so consistent and accumulating all of his value in the first half. That’s how the AL got Jason Bay starting in left field one year—he was a known quantity who had a bananas first half.

The perennial snub didn’t hurt Choo in free agency, of course, and now he’s in the second phase of his career, where he’s still making lists, but the wrong lists for the wrong reasons.


 

 

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