Voting for the Major League Baseball All-Star Game ends tonight at 11:59pm CST. St. Louis Cardinals’ catcher Yadier Molina currently sits in second place for the National League starting spot behind Buster Posey. In the last few days, there has been a large social media push encouraging you to “Vote For Yadi”. As with the Social Media Tourism Symposium post from a few months back, I want to tell you not to blindly vote for Yadi just because he is a Cardinal. Vote for Yadier Molina because he is the best catcher in baseball right now and deserves to start for the National League in the All-Star Game this year in Kansas City.
In the 4th and final update released Tuesday evening, Yadi trails Posey by 216,452 votes for the starting spot.
Yadier Molina deserves better than this. I would be willing to bet that most fans run through the ballot, pick those that they know off the bat, and then either fill in the rest with the first name that jumps out at them or leave them blank. Yadi should be the catcher that people know is having a great year and deserves the start. He should be the guy whose name people know. Maybe this can be attributed to Posey playing on the West Coast and getting more media exposure from that larger market? That may be the case. In a perfect world, Yadier Molina would be the name that jumps out at regular fans at the position when they don’t really care enough to compare stats.
If you do compare stats, it would be hard to justify not voting for Yadier. Molina is hitting .316 with 30 runs scored, 12 home runs, 44 RBIs and 7 stolen bases. His 7 swiped bases are four more than any other catcher in MLB. His 80 hits are the most in the majors among catchers, albeit in the most At-Bats (253). His 12 HRs are the most of any catcher in the National League. He has batted in more runs than any catcher in MLB with 44. Yadier Molina is having one of the best offensive years amongst catchers in all of Major League Baseball, not just the National League. In the Cardinals’ recent four game winning streak, Molina put up significant numbers at the plate with 3 home runs and 7 RBIs, including this 3-run bomb to lift the Cardinals past the Marlins.
Defense is more important for a catcher than any other position player. Yadi has caught 563 innings, 13 more than any other catcher in all of MLB and 101 more than Posey. With other position players, you could dismiss some numbers at the plate because their team has given them more appearances at the plate to make things happen. With a catcher, the innings behind the plate affect their body much more than any other position, 2-9. Molina is four years older than Buster, although Posey underwent surgery to repair a fractured fibula and torn ligaments in his ankle in May of last year. Buster Posey ranks ninth in the NL in fielding percentage. Yadier Molina ranks second with a .996 percentage. Molina is slacking on catching runners stealing this season, catching only 37% of those who run on him. He has caught 43% of offenders for his career, including a high of 64% in 2005. Posey has a career mark of 33% and has only caught 25% of runners this season. Not only has Yadier Molina won four straight Rawlings Gold Gloves at his position, he has made opposing runners look like Willie Mays Hayes running the base paths, as evidenced by this video:
Yadier Molina hit 14 home runs in 2011. . .for the season. This season, he has 12 home runs less than halfway through. This season also happens to be the first for the Homers For Health benefiting Cardinal Glennon Children’s Hospital. Coincidence? Maybe. As someone who is involved with the Homers For Health team, I sure am happy about his numbers this year though. His home runs alone have helped raise $33,504 to help Glennon help children and families in need.
If you don’t believe me that Yadier Molina deserves to start for the National League as Catcher in the 2012 All-Star Game at Kauffman Stadium in Kansas City, Missouri, you could listen to these two guys who get paid to know what they are talking about. One guy thinks Yadi should start and the other thinks Carlos Ruiz, a very distant third in voting, should start.
Or watch Chris Duncan talk about how Yadier Molina might just be a candidate for the NL MVP award this year:
Vote today for Yadier Molina. You can vote up to 25 times apparently. That’s 25 times per email address, not that I’m trying to remind you that most of you have more than one email address or anything.
Post courtesy of Mills Properties
Photo Meme courtesy of someone on QuickMeMe.com.