The All MLB Teams were announced last night, with the Nationals having one player make the list.
After hitting .351, with 13 homers, 37 RBIs, and an OPS of 1.185, Juan Soto was rewarded by being named to the All MLB First team for outfield. Joining Soto in the first team is Mike Trout and Mookie Betts. At only 22, Soto has now been named to both the second team (2019) and first team (2020). The superstar missed the beginning of the season due to a positive COVID test which cost him the NL MVP award, so it is great to that didn’t cost him this time around.
Soto then joined the cast of MLB Network to talk about him being named to the team.
Over at shortstop was one of the biggest snubs of the night. Fernando Tatis Jr. and Corey Seager won First Team and Second Team shortstop respectively, while Trea Turner finished as a finalist. While the three were close in stats this past season, Turner was the clearly better offensive player, while Tatis had the edge in defense. Below are the three’s 2020 season stats.
Turner: .335 BA, 12 HRs, 41 RBIs, 12 SB, .394 OBP, .588 SLG, .982 OPS, 157 OPS+, 157 wRC+, 2.2 bWAR, 2.7 fWAR
9 errors, -7 DRS, -2.9 UZR, 2 OAA
Tatis Jr.: .277 BA, 17 HRs, 45 RBIs, 11 SB, .368 OPB, .571 SLG, .937 OPS, 155 OPS+, 149 wRC+, 2.5 bWAR, 2.9 fWAR
3 errors, 1 DRS, .9 UZR, 7 OAA
Seager: .307 BA, 15 HRs, 41 RBIs, 1 SB, .358 OPB, .585 SLG, .943 OPS, 152 OPS+, 151 wRC+, 1.9 bWAR, 1.9 fWAR
8 errors, -2 DRS, -3.5 UZR, 0 OAA
Yesterday, I wrote about how I believed Turner was the clear cut front runner to be named to first team. While explaining why Turner should deserve the nod, I did note how I was fearful Turner would miss out on making the All MLB Team due to the fan vote and the Nationals not making the playoffs. It turns out my fears were well warranted. I stated,
"Another problem holding Turner back is the fact that despite All MLB Teams are supposed to only take the regular season into consideration, this factor will be disregarded by some. Turner’s competition Corey Seager and Fernando Tatis Jr. both made the playoffs. Seager won NLCS and World Series MVP. Those two accolades are going to be one of the major factors fans look at despite this is supposed to be a regular-season award. Tatis Jr. on the other hand is one of the most polarizing young players in the game and is already the talk of the sport, where Trea Turner has been under-rated his entire career."
Tatis and Seager making the playoffs, with Seager being named NLCS and World Series MVP paid dividends in the decision. It is an upsetting decision, but unfortunately it wasn’t a total surprise. Now it will be up to Turner to prove to the world next year that they were wrong.