The 2011 MLB All Star Game is just under six weeks away, which means All Star ballot results are starting to be released. The San Francisco Giants and Oakland Athletics both have players that are worthy of inclusion, with the potential for repeat selections. Both teams are hanging around in their respective division races thanks to some key individuals, primarily on their pitching staffs.
2010 saw the A's and Giants both send two players to the All Star Game. The Giants sent Tim Linecum and Brian Wilson while the A's sent Trevor Cahill and Andrew Bailey. Given the first half offensive struggles of both teams last year, it's not surprising offensive players did not end up on the roster.
As we head into June in 2011, the Giants could send Lincecum and Wilson as they are both having solid seasons. Lincecum is 5-4 with a 2.22 ERA and 79 strikeouts (both good for fourth in the National League). Wilson is tied for fifth in the National League in saves with 14. His numbers aren't spectacular but he's got the name recognition that often results in an All Star nod.
Buster Posey likely would have worked his way into All Star consideration, but his leg and ankle injury mean even if he's voted in he won't be able to play. He's actually leading in the initial round of balloting results with a 151,000 vote lead over Brian McCann. It will be interesting to see if he maintains his lead in the coming month.
The Oakland Athletics could send Trevor Cahill once again as he is 6-3 with a 2.31 ERA. He's struggled a bit recently and will need to square things away if he's going to make the team for the second straight season. Outside of Cahill, Gio Gonzalez could work his way onto the team. He's fourth in the American League with a 2.17 ERA. Andrew Bailey is only just now getting back from his forearm injury and will not make the team.
Offensively the A's struggles have left them without a significant hitter. Ryan Sweeney has been the team's best hitter thus far but that has been in limited appearances. Given the requirement that every team have a representative on the roster, it's likely that it will be either Trevor Cahill or Gio Gonzalez.