Dansby Swanson More Than Worthy of ASG Nod, Saying Otherwise Is Foolish

It’s not often that I write a whole-ass post just to counter bad takes, but there’s a lot out there about how Dansby Swanson isn’t worthy of an All-Star nod. One iteration that has been quite common across Cubdom, at least on a particular social media platform, is that Nico Hoerner is more deserving of a spot. The only explanation I can come up with there is that Hoerner has been a Cub longer, so fans are more invested in him than they are in the new guy.

What’s wild is that you can craft a very convincing argument that Swanson is actually the best shortstop in the National League and should be starting the game based on merit. Let’s take a look at some of his overall stats and where they rank among his NL peers at short:

fWAR: 3.0 (1st)
wRC+: 110 (2nd)
OPS: .759 (1st)
wOBA: .335 (1st)
DRS: 9 (1st)
OAA: 10 (1st)
UZR: 3.1 (2nd)

Starter Orlando Arcia doesn’t have nearly the defensive chops, though some of his offensive numbers outpace Swanson in a smaller sample size. As for the notion that Hoerner has been better and is more deserving of a spot, well, that’s even more foolish than saying Swanson doesn’t belong. At the risk of bashing Hoerner, who has obviously been very good this season, his numbers simply aren’t All-Star caliber.

Among NL second basemen:

fWAR: 2.2 (4th)
wRC+: 99 (10th)
OPS: .725 (11th)
wOBA: .318 (11th)
DRS: 4 (3rd)
OAA: 6 (1st)
UZR: -0.8 (6th)

There are only seven position players in the NL and just 15 in all of baseball with 3.0 fWAR or more at this point in the season, so Swanson is in pretty strong company. The fact that he’s doing it on a new team, one that hasn’t played up to its potential to this point, should be another mark in his favor. Swanson has been the Cubs’ best overall player this season and his All-Star appearance is more than justified.

For those who disagree, and I know you’re out there, I would love to see the evidence to support your opinion.

Back to top button