Each year, a few select players have the misfortune of being labeled as “All-Star Game snubs.” The fan vote to determine starting position players is an imperfect system, as evidenced by the current crop of potential starters in the American League. Eight Kansas City Royals players rank within the top three vote-getters at their positions.

Because of this glaring imperfection, we’re stuck wondering what could have been. For the four players below, those “what if” moments could come sooner rather than later.

Players from each league will be labeled as “snubs,” but the four below—two from each league—have the potential to be the biggest All-Star Game snubs this season.

Now the polls are closed, and tonight we’ll get our first look at which players will make up each league’s starting lineup. The selection show for position players takes place tonight at 7:00 p.m. ET on ESPN. So with just over a week separating us and the 2015 MLB All-Star Game, we found it prudent to take a look at four players who could miss out on a trip to Cincinnati for this year’s mid-summer classic.

Before we get into that though, take a look at the chart below which details the projected starter at each position in each league, as determined by MLB.com’s most recent voting results release.


All-Star Game Voting Leaders


American League Snubs

Every team has to have at least one representative, so several players are safe from “snub” status—e.g. Jason Kipnis of the Cleveland Indians—but a few players in the American League are going to get ripped off.

The first, and probably the most prominent, is Manny Machado. The 22-year-old is having a breakout season and is beginning to live up to the potential-hall-of-famer status that he was billed to as a prospect.

Over 80 games—344 plate appearances—the budding superstar boasts a .302/.357/.523 batting line, with 16 home runs, 18 doubles, 44 RBI, 51 runs scored, 11 stolen bases and a 55-28 K/BB ratio. Machado is leading the Orioles in their quest for a division title, and the Florida-prep product is an outside threat to log a 30-30 season.

Among qualified position players, Machado ranks in a fourth-place tie with Miguel Cabrera with a gaudy 3.6 fWAR. In addition to that, among third basemen, Machado ranks within the AL’s top-three in batting average, OBP, slugging percentage, wRC+, RBI, runs scored and stolen bases, per Fangraphs.com.

The young third baseman is easily one of the most well-rounded third basemen in all of Major League Baseball, but he’s going unrecognized in the polls, raking in just under 2 million votes thus far.

The Orioles are pleading their case to get Machado into the All-Star Game.

The team has worked to get “#VoteManny” trending, but it doesn’t seem like O’s fans are taking the hint, as the four-year-veteran ranks nearly 10 million votes behind position-leader Josh Donaldson.

Machado still has a great chance to make the team as the Orioles’ lone representative on the AL roster, but he’ll have to compete with teammates Adam Jones and Zach Britton for that honor.

Behind Machado, Mark Teixeira figures to be the league’s second-biggest snub. The 13-year-veteran is the proud owner of a .245/.359/.537 batting line with 20 home runs, 15 doubles, 58 RBI, 37 runs scored and a 48-43 K/BB ratio.

Teixeira has been the biggest component to the success experienced by the New York Yankees’ offense this season, but his accomplishments have gone rather unnoticed to this point in the year. The 35-year-old is nowhere to be found in the latest voting results, and he’s sure to be passed over in favor of teammate Dellin Betances as the only Yankee player on the AL All-Star team.

Surprisingly enough, Teixeira has made just two All-Star teams in his 13 years, but his statistics this year may warrant a third showing. When pitted against other AL first basemen, Teixeira ranks third in fWAR (2.0), second in OBP, second in slugging percentage, third in wRC+, second in home runs and first in RBI, per Fangraphs.com.

A five-time Gold Glove winner in the American League, Teixeira has always been one of the position’s premier defenders and, at the very least, would make a make a nice late-game replacement for manager Ned Yost. Unfortunately, it looks as though the two-time All-Star will miss out on a spot on this year’s roster.


National League Snubs

Do you know who’s having a huge year among National League catchers? Derek Norris. Know who’s not? Yadier Molina, Francisco Cervelli and Miguel Montero, yet they all rank ahead of Norris in the voting.

Norris made the American League All-Star team last year as a member of the Oakland Athletics, and the 26-year-old should represent the National League and the San Diego Padres in Cincinnati this year. That said, it doesn’t appear as though the young backstop will get the chance to assume his rightful spot on the NL All-Star team.

Norris strikes out quite a bit—23.9 K% this year—but that doesn’t overshadow the fact that, among NL catchers, the Kansas-prep product boasts the position’s second-best home run, RBI, runs scored and slugging percentage marks. Sure, his inability—or unwillingness—to draw a walk is a bit of a drawback, but Norris is an asset on both offense and defense, per Fangraphs.com.

Norris boasts an above-average caught-stealing percentage—36 percent, compared to the 29 percent league average—and ranks in a second-place tie when sorting qualified catchers by defensive runs saved. In short, he’s pretty good defensively, and that sentiment is echoed by this Twitter user, who has done us all a major favor in highlighting Norris’s pitch-framing abilities:

The Padres may send just one player to the All-Star Game—most likely Justin Upton—and if they do, then Norris will certainly qualify as a “snub.”

As for the next biggest snub on the NL roster, it’s tough to argue against A.J. Pollock as the league’s biggest snub in the outfield.

Pollock, a 27-year-old Connecticut native, is having the breakout season that many expected from him as a first-round selection out of Notre Dame. Through 79 games, the four-year veteran finds himself slashing a strong .303/.347/.463, while popping 10 home runs, with 15 doubles, 36 RBI, 52 runs scored, 16 steals and a 54-22 K/BB ratio.

Pollock ranks fourth among NL outfielders in fWAR—3.3, behind Bryce Harper’s 5.0 mark—while his batting average, runs scored and stolen base marks all rank within the league’s top five at the position, per Fangraphs.com. Meanwhile, defensively, the Notre Dame product ranks as a top-tier outfielder as measured by UZR/150 and defensive runs saved.

That said, Pollock is nowhere to be found in the most recent ballot results. Discouraging voter turnout aside, the young outfielder keeps making his case for inclusion on the NL roster with plays like this:

All told, Pollock has had a standout season, and his bat and glove would be a welcome addition to the National League’s roster come July 14.


All stats and advanced stats courtesy of Fangraphs.com unless otherwise noted.

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