PHOENIX, AZ - JULY 12: National League All-Star Jay Bruce #32 of the Cincinnati Reds and National League All-Star Justin Upton #10 of the Arizona Diamondbacks pose in the outfield during batting practice before the start of the 82nd MLB All-Star Game at Chase Field on July 12, 2011 in Phoenix, Arizona. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
The Arizona Diamondbacks have certainly had an up and down season, but that doesn't mean they don't have payers on their roster that deserve to be in Kansas City this summer.
The Arizona Diamondbacks have had their ups and downs so far in 2012. The team has been plagued by early season injuries, their go-to players are not having the same production that they did last year and by the time the All-Star break arrives, they are likely to be somewhere around .500.
But there are bright spots to their campaign thus far. New acquisitions such as Jason Kubel and Trevor Cahill have shined for the team. Aaron Hill is beginning to look like the all-star he once was. Oh, and they have a rookie pitcher by the name of Wade Miley that is not only looking to win the NL Rookie of the Year award, but possibly the Cy Young as well.
So which of these players deserves to participate in the All-Star game this season? Let's break down the frontrunners one by one and see where they stand.
You really have to start with possibly the biggest surprise and most important piece on the pitching staff. Miley started the year in the bullpen, primarily being used as a long reliever in stints. No one expected the kid to be sporting a 9-3 record with a 2.19 ERA by the midway point. Not only will he definitely receive the nod to travel to Kansas City, but he may be under consideration to start the game as well.
Hill has caught fire for the Diamondbacks within the past few weeks. In the month of June, he has 30 hits in 83 at bats for a .361 average. He also boasts five home runs and 17 RBIs. He, like many other D-backs, didn't start off at this kind of pace, but he could be making a late push to land on the NL Roster.
Kubel has by far been the most consistent hitter for the Diamondbacks this season. He has a .298 average on the year and he leads the club in home runs and runs batted in. After many fans doubted his signing at the beginning of the season, the 30 year old lefty has proven quite a few people wrong. With the injury to Dodgers center fielder Matt Kemp, Kubel is in prime position to be elected to the All-Star game.
Oh, Miggy. Now that the Diamondbacks have locked him up to a new five-year deal, Montero has really started to play solidly. He is batting .333 in June and has proven to be one of the most difficult catchers to run on in the MLB. Whether he is batting in the cleanup position or somewhere further down the line, Miggy always seems to have some sort of positive impact on the game. With his defensive prowess and his timely hitting, don't be surprised to see him selected for the Midsummer Classic.
At this time last year, we were all sitting around the fire discussing whether or not Justin Upton would be able to win the NL MVP award at the ripe age of 23. He hasn't been nearly as effective in 2012, tallying just 20 RBIs and 5 home runs in April and May. But his recent resurgence finds the D-backs right back in the thick of things in terms of a pennant race. Upton may not get the call to play outfield for the National League this season, but if he can continue playing well, he may help carry his team back to the playoffs once again.
Goldy is yet another Diamondbacks player that has settled in at the plate. He has hit six homers and has 13 RBIs in June after having just four home runs during the first two months of the season. His OBP is up as well, which is good to see considering his high strikeout percentage. Goldy probably won't get his first shot at an all-star selection this year, but with continued solid play, he will eventually.
Willie Bloomquist, Trevor Cahill, David Hernandez.