Truth be told, the league mostly got things right by including Luis Robert Jr., Justin Steele, Marcus Stroman and Dansby Swanson in the game, but in our estimation, there were at least five Chicago players that had arguments and would have at least made the game a bit more entertaining.
Jake Burger, White Sox
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It’s pretty apparent that Robert is the best offensive player on the White Sox this season, but Jake Burger may very well be the most fun.
He has 18 home runs, second on the team, and has backed that up with 11 doubles and a triple in 223 at-bats for the White Sox, and he’s definitely hit some of those long balls in some key situations.
Admittedly, a .220 average isn’t getting you into the game in most situations, but watching Burger smash home runs in the home run derby would be something special. Make it happen, MLB.
Lucas Giolito, White Sox
His 6-5 record and 3.53 ERA aren’t going to turn many heads, but some of Lucas Giolito’s other numbers are certainly worthy of praise, including his 9.8 K/9 rate and his nine quality starts, which leads the White Sox this season.
Strikeouts aren’t normally the most exciting thing in an MLB game, but putting a pitcher with swing-and-miss stuff against the other league’s best hitters is a juicy proposition, and Giolito would fit that bill to a T.
Nico Hoerner, Cubs
Getting into the All-Star Game as a second baseman is never easy, but when you consider the production Nico Hoerner is giving the Cubs at the plate and on the bases, you have to strongly weigh that argument.
He has 18 stolen bases on the season, along with 42 RBI’s and 22 extra-base hits. He has scored 46 runs to lead the team, and has seamlessly taken to whatever role David Ross cooks up for him.
If Dansby Swanson can make the roster, then his double play partner has a legit argument too.
Mark Leiter, Jr.
He has a 2.41 ERA and a 0.86 WHIP this season, and his K/9 ratio of 12.8 leads the Cubs. He also has three saves and has developed a lethal pitch combination that hitters have badly struggled with.
His success with his splitter, with 40 strikeouts and just seven hits allowed in 66 at-bats, has been something to marvel at, and he would be a great addition to the National League’s bullpen.
Christopher Morel, Cubs
Look, we know that Christopher Morel has only appeared in 42 games and had 154 at-bats this season, but he has been the Cubs’ most dynamic offensive player and is arguably one of the most exciting players to watch in the city right now.
He’s got 15 home runs and 37 RBI’s already this season, and yes he has 50 strikeouts but he’s still carrying a .327 on-base percentage, a big improvement from last season, and his batting average is up 44 points.
He is a very good candidate to appear in the home run derby in Seattle, but there’s at least an argument that he would have been a fun addition to the roster.