Each Major League Baseball season there are plenty of All-Star snubs. This season one of those snubs is Pittsburgh Pirates’ backstop Francisco Cervelli
On Sunday, the rosters for next Tuesday’s Major League Baseball All-Star Game were announced. For the Pittsburgh Pirates reliever Felipe Vazquez was named an All-Star for the first time in his career.
While Vazquez was deserving of the nod, there is another Pirate who should have joined Vazquez as a first time All-Star this season. That player is catcher Francisco Cervelli.
The National League All-Star team will have three catchers on the roster – Buster Posey, J.T. Realmuto, and Willson Contreras. While each of these players are deserving of a spot in the mid-summer classic, so is Cervelli.
On Sunday Cervelli was activated off the 7-day concussion disabled list. Prior to this, he had been out of action for over two weeks. Despite being on the shelf for over two weeks Cervelli still entered play on Sunday ranking third among all NL catchers – behind Realmuto and Contreras – with a 2.3 fWAR.
After going 1-for-3 with a walk and a double in his return to the lineup on Sunday the Pirate backstop owns a .258/.392/.489/.881 slash line, .379 wOBA, and a wRC+ of 140. Among NL catchers with at least 210 plate appearances Cervelli ranks first in on-base percentage, second in wOBA and wRC+, and third in slugging percentage.
Cervelli has also brought it defensively this season. He has thrown out 12 attempted base stealers which is tied for fourth most in the NL. He has also done a fine job blocking the plate having allowed just two passed balls.
Yes, he has spent time on the disabled list. Yes, catcher is a deep position in the National League. But, Pittsburgh Pirates’ catcher Francisco Cervelli should have been named a 2018 National League All-Star.