Jose Bautista, Edwin Encarnacion and Brett Cecil named All-Stars for Toronto Blue Jays


It’s been a tough season for fans of the Toronto Blue Jays. A dreadful month of April, underwhelming starting pitching and a tougher than expected American League East have all contributed to the current dismay of the fan base. Despite a miraculous 11-game winning streak that has brought the Jays somewhat back into contention, overall there haven’t been many positive headlines to write about the 2013 blue birds.

But tonight fans were temporarily relived from their anguish upon hearing that Jose Bautista, Edwin Encarnacion and Brett Cecil were named 2013 MLB All-Stars.

Bautista has been up to his old tricks, sporting a very solid .375 wOBA, 138 wRC+ and 3.7 WAR so far in 2013. Despite an 0 for 4 performance today he’s been raking lately to more than make up for a couple of cold spells earlier in the season. Bautista (aka JoeyBats19) will start in right field and was the only Blue Jay selected in the fan vote.

Jun 5, 2013; San Francisco, CA, USA; Toronto Blue Jays third baseman Edwin Encarnacion (10) is congratulated by right fielder Jose Bautista (19) after they both scored during the fifth inning of the game against the San Francisco Giants at AT

I debated back in May who was having the better 2013 season, Bautista or Encarnacion. At the time I concluded the honour should go to Jose in a relative landslide but if you asked me again today (or maybe before Edwin tweaked his hamstring) I might have a different answer. Encarnacion has been every bit as good as Bautista over the course of the season represented by his .377 wOBA, 139 wRC+ and 2.5 WAR. It’s nice to finally see Edwin (or is it Edwing now?) get some respect from the rest of the league as this will be his very first All-Star appearance.

Jun 15, 2013; Arlington, TX, USA; Toronto Blue Jays pitcher Brett Cecil (27) throws a pitch in the seventh inning of the game against the Texas Rangers at Rangers Ballpark in Arlington. The Blue Jays won 6-1. Mandatory Credit: Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports.

In what was probably the most surprising selection for Blue Jays fans, Cecil was also selected for his first midsummer classic. But that’s not to say he didn’t deserve the nod. Often set-up relievers are overlooked in lieu of starting studs and ice-veined closers but Brett was just too good to pass on. He’s dominated this year with a 30.1 % strikeout rate, 1.98 FIP, 2.71 xFIP and 0.82 WHIP.

There could also be another Blue Jay in New York for the All-Star festivites as another member of the bullpen in Steve Delabar has been named for the “Final Vote” that ends on Thursday.

So Blue Jays fans go do your thing and let’s send Steve on a surprise trip to New York!

This one may not count in the win column but it sure does help after today’s ugly and disheartening loss to the Minnesota Twins.

All stats are courtesy of FanGraphs and include this afternoon’s game.