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The 2015 MLB First Half All-Everything Team

Felipe Melecio uses advanced stats to hand out his first-half 2015 MLB Awards.

MLB, Mike Trout

It’s halftime in the Major League Baseball season and with the All-Star break comes a time to reflect back on the first half of yet another exciting baseball season. We will be listing all the players who have made an impact on the year from a sabermetric standpoint. For this, we will once again utilize Felipe’s Ultimate Baseball Advanced Rankings (or FUBAR for short).

The Hit Squad

Our hit squad came to fruition by using the following two advanced stats:

  • Weighted On-Base Average or wOBA for short: A stat that utilizes linear weights to gauge a player’s hitting value. Basically, not all hits are created equal.
  • Isolated Power or ISO: A stat that measures the frequency a player hits for an extra base.

We ranked every player in these two stats, and awarded them points (i.e. 530 points for first place, 460 points for second, etc.). The total points from placing in both wOBA and ISO gave each player their “Hit” score.

  1. Catcher: Stephen Vogt
  2. First Base: Paul Goldschmidt
  3. Second Base: Brian Dozier (he hit a home run during All-Star Game)
  4. Shortstop: Brandon Crawford
  5. Third Base: Todd Frazier (see home run derby)
  6. Left Field: Hanley Ramirez (edging out Andre Ethier)
  7. Center Field: Mike Trout (reigning MVP, current All-Star game MVP).
  8. Right Field: Bryce Harper
  9. Designated Hitter: Giancarlo Stanton (currently leads in average exit velocity).

Plate Discipline Lineup

We use Walk Percentage (BB%), Strikeout Percentage (K%), and Walk:Strikeout (BB:K) to measure a player’s plate discipline. We rank every player by each metric, award points to players for ranking in the top 15 in each category. We take the aggregate score and divide by three.

 

  1. Catcher: Buster Posey
  2. First Base: Paul Goldschmidt (the real leader here is Posey at this position, but he already mans the catching position in this lineup).
  3. Second Base: Joe Panik
  4. Shortstop: Jose Iglesias (known more for his glove, the pesky Iglesias has a high Contact Rate and is tough to strike out).
  5. Third Base: Matt Carpenter (no surprise here!).
  6. Left Field: Michael Brantley
  7. Center Field: Denard Span 
  8. Right Field: Jose Bautista (Joey Bats is a regular in this category)
  9. Designated Hitter: Nori Aoki (leading all hitters in lowest K%).

Base Running

We utilize the following stats for this criteria:

We award players points for ranking in the top 15 in each category. We take the aggregate score and divide by two. We’re not only for base stealers, but smart base runners as well.

  1. Catcher: Russell Martin (a mainstay in this category at catcher).
  2. First Base: Logan Morrison
  3. Second Base: Brandon Phillips (old man still got the legs)
  4. Shortstop: Jean Segura
  5. Third Base: Josh Donaldson (not only does he carry a big bat, but he is light on his feet as well).
  6. Left Field: Brett Gardner 
  7. Center Field: Billy Hamilton (no doubt, he’s the best base runner in the game today).
  8. Right Field: George Springer 
  9. Designated Hitter: Yoenis Cespedes

All-Uranium Team

The best, offensive players usually get awarded the Silver Slugger Award. But we question how silver is better than a radioactive element. Our all-around offensive score adds individual players’ hit, plate discipline, and base running scores.

  1. Catcher: Russell Martin
  2. First Base: Paul Goldschmidt
  3. Second Base: Jason Kipnis 
  4. Shortstop: Brandon Crawford
  5. Third Base: Todd Frazier
  6. Left Field: Brett Gardner
  7. Center Field: Mike Trout
  8. Right Field: Bryce Harper
  9. Designated Hitter: Giancarlo Stanton

All-Plutonium Team

Again, why be golden, when you can be radioactive? We utilize two stats to measure this criteria: Defensive Runs Saved (DRS) and Ultimate Zone Rating (UZR). We’ve covered these two stats on this site before. We award players points for ranking in the top 15 in each category. We take the aggregate score and divide by two.

  1. Catcher: Derek Norris
  2. First Base: Adrian Gonzalez
  3. Second Base: Dee Gordon
  4. Shortstop: Andrelton Simmons 
  5. Third Base: Nolan Arenado
  6. Left Field: Yoenis Cespedes
  7. Center Field: Kevin Kiermaier
  8. Right Field: Giancarlo Stanton (Stanton finally beats Bryce Harper in something).
  9. Rover Position: Lorenzo Cain

All-Radium Team

Our Ultimate lineup, the best of the best will be listed here. Defense, hit, plate discipline, and base running scores are added to create this team.

First Team

  1. Catcher: Buster Posey
  2. First Base: Paul Goldschmidt
  3. Second Base: Jason Kipnis
  4. Shortstop: Brandon Crawford
  5. Third Base: Nolan Arenado
  6. Left Field: Brett Gardner
  7. Center Field: Mike Trout
  8. Right Field: Bryce Harper
  9. Designated Hitter: Giancarlo Stanton

Second Team

  1. Catcher: Russell Martin
  2. First Base: Mark Teixeira
  3. Second Base: Joe Panik
  4. Shortstop: Andrelton Simmons
  5. Third Base: Manny Machado
  6. Left Field: Yoenis Cespedes
  7. Center Field: Joc Pederson (after home run derby, it’s safe to say people know who this kid is now)
  8. Right Field: Jose Bautista
  9. Designated Hitter: Todd Frazier

Ultimate Starting Rotation

We compute our Ultimate Starting Rotation by awarding pitchers points for ranking in the top 20 in the following stats:

  • Field Independent Pitching (FIP)
  • Skill-Interactive Earned Run Average (SIERA)

We’ve gone into further detail explaining both of these stats.

First Rotation

  1. Chris Sale: It will be very interesting to see if he can make it to 300 strikeouts this season.
  2. Max Scherzer: Has been worth every penny this season.
  3. Clayton Kershaw: Do not let the slow start fool you, he’s still among the best.
  4. Corey Kluber: Reigning AL Cy Young winner is showing he’s no fluke.
  5. Chris Archer: The kid is full of swag and has the talent and skills to match.

Second Rotation

  1. Michael Pineda: Pine tar incident seems like a long time ago.
  2. Gerrit Cole: The Pirates have their ace of the future pitching to full potential.
  3. Clay Buchholz: Finally pitching like a top-of-rotation starter
  4. Jake Arrieta: The true ace of the competiting Chicago Cubs.
  5. Dallas Keuchel: Your American League All-Star starting pitcher.

Ultimate Bullpen

  1. Zach Britton
  2. Dellin Betances
  3. Andrew Miller
  4. Cody Allen
  5. Carson Smith
  6. David Robertson
  7. A.J. Ramos
  8. Aroldis Chapman
  9. Will Smith
  10. Sergio Romo

Awards

AL Rookie of the Year: Carson Smith, Seattle Mariners’ reliever. Honorable mention: Lance McCullersDevon Travis

NL Rookie of the Year: Joc Pederson, L.A. Dodgers outfielder. Honorable mention: Noah Syndergaard and Michael Blazek.

AL Reliever: Zach Britton

NL Reliever: A.J. Ramos

AL Manager: A.J. Hinch

NL Manager: Joe Maddon

AL Cy Young: Chris Sale

NL Cy Young: Max Scherzer

AL MVP: Mike Trout

NL MVP: Bryce Harper

Featured Image Credit: Keith Allison/Flickr

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