Friday, May 1, 2009

2009 April AL All Stars

Well ladies and gentlemen, yesterday marked the last day of April. It seems like just yesterday that we were all eager to get the baseball season underway, but time flies when it's baseball season.

With that said, some players are off to a fantastic start so far this season. While the results may look somewhat skewed right now, it's interesting to take a look at which players are producing for their clubs early on. Then again, come September, some of these numbers might seem ridiculous as players inevitably come down to Earth or struggle to maintain their current place.

I have assembled a roster of the 2009 April All Stars. While I expect some of these guys to be producing 2-3 months from now, it's obvious that some of these guys are playing out of their minds right now.

And for clarity, I am focusing on the American League today. The NL All Stars can be found here.

Without further ado, here are your American League studs for April.

2009 April AL All Stars

C- Victor Martinez, Indians
Seems to have fully recovered from his injury plagued 2008...already has 5 HR and 5 2B

1B- Kevin Youkilis, Red Sox
Hard to argue against a guy that has a .505 OBP

2B-Aaron Hill, Blue Jays
Hill has been one of the main catalysts in the Blue Jays offense and appears to be fully recovered from his concussion. Hill gets the nod here over Robinson Cano thanks to the sentimental vote.

3B-Evan Longoria, Rays
Is there anything this guy can't do? He hits for power (6 HR, 11 2B), gets on base, and plays great defense; all of which make him one of the best third basement in baseball.

SS-Jason Bartlett, Rays
Somehow, Bartlett is hitting .358 with a .395 OBP. It's impossible not to recognize that kind of production.

OF-Nick Markakis, Orioles
Hitting a ridiculous .381 so far and is proving to be worth every cent of the 6 year/$66 million dollar extension

OF-Adam Jones, Orioles
Everyone's favorite choice for most improved player has been fantastic so far...hitting .359 and is leading the AL in runs scored (24)

OF-Torii Hunter, Angels
The Angels needed Hunter to step up after they lost Vlad for a month, and Hunter has been amazing. He is hitting .325 with 8 HR and 19 runs scored. Hunter is a major reason why the offense has not slacked.

DH- Miguel Cabrera, Tigers
Cabrera is the heart and soul of the Tigers offense and is putting together a splendid 2009 so far (.377, 4 HR, 14 RBI)

SP-Zack Greinke, Royals
-Simply amazing. Best pitcher not named Johan.

SP-Armando Galarraga, Tigers
-I bet Texas would like to have Galarraga and his 1.85 ERA back

SP-Felix Hernandez, Mariners
-Quickly becoming one of the best pitchers in baseball. When he's one, Hernandez is dominant.

SP-Tim Wakefield, Red Sox
-Wake has already thrown 2 complete games and his knuckleball has been unhittable.

SP-Kevin Millwood, Rangers
-Yes, Millwood is proving that a pitcher can indeed have success with the Rangers (2.13 ERA). We'll see if he can keep it up; I'd say no.

RP-Scott Downs, Blue Jays
-Before he became the Jays closer, Downs was the best middle relief pitcher you never heard of. I'm excited to watch him close, simply because Jays fans do not have to suffer heart problems from the stress of BJ Ryan.

RP-Frank Francisco, Rangers
-I love redemption. And I thought Francisco's career was over when he threw a chair at a fan in Oakland. But Francisco has thrived thus far as the Rangers closer by putting up goose eggs in April (0 ERA).

RP- Jonathan Papelbon, Red Sox
-Established himself as one of the best closers in baseball and in line for a big 2009 season (1.74 ERA). Use him well, Terry Francona.

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