Baltimore Orioles: Jonathan Villar Nominated For All-MLB Team
Baltimore Orioles infielder Jonathan Villar is a nominee for the first annual All-MLB team.
Announced on Monday afternoon, Major League Baseball has opened voting for the first annual All-MLB team for the 2019 season. Not surprisingly, you won’t find very many Baltimore Orioles on the list of nominees. Just one player, infielder Jonathan Villar, is on the ballot representing the Orioles.
Voting is underway now and fans can vote once per day up until December 3rd. The First and Second All-MLB Team will be selected using fan votes and committee of “experts”, per the release from MLB.com.
The ballot can be found here.
Villar has some stiff competition at second base on the ballot. Ozzie Albies (Atlanta Braves), Jose Altuve (Houston Astros), DJ LeMahieu (New York Yankees), Whit Merrifield (Kansas City Royals), and Max Muncy (Los Angeles Dodgers) are also nominated.
Villar, who is at the center of Orioles winter trade talk and even thought to be a non-tender candidate by the December 2nd deadline, led the 2019 Orioles in Wins Above Replacement at 4.0, according to Fangraphs, and played in all 162 games last season.
He would finish with a slash line of 274/.339/.453 with a career-high 24 home runs, 111 runs scored, and 73 RBI. The 28-year-old switch-hitter also chipped in 33 doubles, five triples, and 40 stolen bases.
Of the six nominees at second base for the All-MLB team, Villar finished fourth in fWAR and led the field in runs scored and stolen bases.
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It’s going to be hard to beat out LeMahieu for First-Team honors. The New York Yankees second baseman led the group of six in batting average (.327), on-base percentage (.375), and fWAR (5.4). He logged 26 home runs, 102 RBI, 109 runs scored, a minuscule 13.7% strikeout rate, and a 136 wRC+. Only Jose Altuve (138) had a higher wRC+.
Despite not having a plethora of Orioles players to get excited about on this ballot, an All-MLB team is a great way for Major League Baseball to honor the regular season work of some of the game’s top players, much like every other professional sports league does.
It’s also another way for fans to stay engaged during the long, cold offseason, specifically the holiday season where the hot stove takes a bit of a break as team offices close for the holidays.
Let the debates begin. Vote for Jonathan Villar. Go O’s. Enjoy the rest of your Monday and don’t forget to vote every single day right here.