On Wednesday evening Major League Baseball announced the finalists for the All-MLB Team. There were four Cincinnati Reds players that made the list that fans can vote on over the next week-and-a-half.
At first base, Joey Votto was nominated after hitting .266 with 36 home runs and a .938 OPS. For as good as his season was – he did have the second best OPS among all of the nominees, he’s going to have to get plenty of ballot stuffing to overtake Vladimir Guerrero Jr.
Jonathan India was nominated for second base after hitting .269 with 21 home runs, 12 steals, and an .835 OPS. His OPS was 4th best among the group of nominees and he’ll probably have to benefit from some ballot stuffing, too, to chase down Marcus Semien or Brandon Lowe.
In the outfield the Cincinnati Reds had two nominees in Jesse Winker and Nick Castellanos. Winker his .305 with 24 home runs and a .949 OPS that ranked 3rd among the group. Castellanos hit .309 with 34 home runs and a .939 OPS, which ranked 4th among the group. Looking at the nominees, it would appear that Castellanos could have a shot here. Juan Soto and Bryce Harper would seem to be locks if the voting were based on the season instead of popularity. Beyond them, though, there’s a chance you could pick Castellanos as the next best outfielder.
If you want to try and stuff the ballot box, here’s the link.
Another step closer to an automated strikezone
Major League Baseball seems like they really want to automate the strikezone in the future. They have tested it out in the Atlantic League. And they’ve tested it out in the Low-A Southeast, except for in Daytona (where the Reds farm team is). It seems that they are going to be expanding where they test it out. Major League Baseball posted jobs looking for Automated Ball and Strike System Tech’s in Florida for spring training, the Low-A Southeast, as well as the Triple-A West.
In the Low-A Southeast the strikezone, as called by the ABS system, was altered after feedback from the players in the first half. The strikezone actually got wider, and shorter than it was initially called in the first half.
What will be interesting to see is what system the Triple-A West will be using. The Low-A Southeast uses Hawkeye, which is the same technology that is now used in Major League Baseball. The teams in that league, except Daytona, all play in big league spring training stadiums and thus the technology was installed there as teams want that for the big leaguers. But when the system was used in the Atlantic League they were using the Trackman system, which was in Major League Baseball from 2015-2019, but was replaced by Hawkeye.
The two technologies are quite different. Hawkeye uses cameras to track everything on the field. Trackman uses radar to track the ball. Every minor league stadium has had Trackman installed for years. But given what we saw last year in the Low-A Southeast and the ABS only being expanded to one other league, will MLB help foot the bill to install Hawkeye at those minor league stadiums, or will they use Trackman to test things out even though it won’t be used in the big leagues.