06/22/11 10:00 AM ET

# Stats reveal deserving AL All-Star infielders

By Roger Schlueter / MLB.com

We have compiled a point system to help with the task. The point assessment is as follows:

• Looking at league and positional leaders in: batting, OPS, runs, hits, doubles, triples, homers, RBIs, walks, steals, total bases and extra-base hits.

• Allotting points for leading or being among the leaders in the league/the position in the above categories:

• Five points if the player is leading the league.

• Three points if the player is second through fifth in the league in a category.

• Three points if the player is leading his position in a category.

• One point if a player is second or third in a category at his position.

The point assessment serves as just one way to try and wade through all of the numbers and all of the variables to arrive at some sort of rational conclusion. Also, it should be noted:

• A couple of important rate stats -- on-base percentage and slugging percentage -- were omitted from the span of categories. The inclusion of walks, hits and total bases should be enough to incorporate those types of abilities best represented by on-base and slugging.

• No defensive stats were incorporated into this system.

On with the look around the AL. Today, we'll consider first base, second base, third base and shortstop. All numbers and ranks reflect how the AL leaderboards looked after Monday's games.

**FIRST BASE, top five in voting: Adrian Gonzalez (BOS), Mark Teixeira (NYY), Miguel Cabrera (DET), Mitch Moreland (TEX), Paul Konerko (CWS)**

Categories: Batting average, OPS, runs, hits, doubles, homers, RBIs, walks, total bases and extra-base hits.

__Adrian Gonzalez, 61 points__

• Gonzalez leads the AL in six categories and occupies the second through fifth spots in the AL in two categories. 36 points

• Among AL first basemen, Gonzalez leads in eight categories and is second or third in one category. 25 points

__Mark Teixeira, 15 points__

• Teixeira leads the AL in one category and is second through fifth in the AL in one category. 8 points

• Among first basemen, Teixeira leads in one category and is second or third in four categories. 7 points

__Miguel Cabrera, 25 points__

• Cabrera doesn't lead the AL in any of the categories, but he does place second through fifth in five of them. 15 points

• Cabrera leads all AL first basemen in one category and is second or third in seven categories. 10 points

__Paul Konerko, 24 points__

• Konerko doesn't lead the AL in any of the categories, but he does place second through fifth in six of them. 18 points

• Konerko doesn't lead AL first basemen in any of the categories, but he is second or third in six of them. 6 points

**Conclusion:** If possible, Gonzalez has been even better than expected. If there was a Most Valuable Player Award for the first 10 weeks of the season, he would have to be considered a front-runner. That seems to be more than good enough for the starting nod in the Midsummer Classic. Konerko, who has backed up his tremendous 2010 campaign with a fantastic first half, stands shoulder-to-shoulder with Cabrera as a more-than-legitimate option for a backup at the position.

**SECOND BASE: Robinson Cano (NYY), Dustin Pedroia (BOS), Ian Kinsler (TEX), Orlando Cabrera (CLE), Ben Zobrist (TB)**

Categories: Batting average, OPS, runs, hits, doubles, triples, homers, RBIs, walks, steals, total bases and extra-base hits.

__Robinson Cano, 22 points__

• Cano doesn't lead the AL in any of the categories, and does not place second through fifth in any of them. 0 points

• Among AL second basemen, Cano leads in six categories and is second or third in four of them. 22 points

__Dustin Pedroia, 13 points__

• Pedroia doesn't lead the AL in any of the categories, but he does place second through fifth in one of them. 3 points

• Among second basemen, Pedroia leads in one category and is second or third in seven of them. 10 points

__Ben Zobrist, 23 points__

• Zobrist doesn't lead the AL in any of the categories, but he does place second through fifth in two of them. 6 points

• Among second basemen, Zobrist leads in three categories and is second or third in eight of them. 17 points

**Conclusion:** At this point, it is looking like the tossup between the No. 1 vote-getter and the guy in fifth, who is approximately 2.8 million votes behind. While Cano leads all AL second basemen in more categories, Zobrist ranks among all players in the league and his consistent presence in all of the categories evens the playing field a bit. This is an amazingly close battle.

**THIRD BASE: Alex Rodriguez (NYY), Adrian Beltre (TEX), Kevin Youkilis (BOS), Evan Longoria (TB), Brandon Inge (DET)**

Categories: batting average, OPS, runs, hits, doubles, homers, RBIs, walks, total bases and extra-base hits.

__Alex Rodriguez, 16 points__

• Rodriguez doesn't lead the AL in any of the categories, and does not place second through fifth in any of them. 0 points

• For all AL third basemen, Rodriguez leads in three categories and is second or third in seven of them. 16 points

__Adrian Beltre, 17 points__

• Beltre doesn't lead the AL in any of the categories, but he does place second through fifth in one of them. 3 points

• Among third basemen, Beltre leads in three categories and is second or third in five of them. 14 points

__Kevin Youkilis, 18 points__

• Youkilis doesn't lead the AL in any of the categories, but he does place second through fifth in one of them. 3 points

• For all AL third basemen, Youkilis leads in four categories and is second or third in three of them. 15 points

**Conclusion:** While Rodriguez, Beltre and Youkilis are 1-2-3 in voting, this point system reverses the order, with Youkilis heading the trio. In truth, the three are so tightly packed and each is a monster week away from creating some distance from the others. Interestingly, if Youkilis gets the starting nod, he would join Rodriguez as one of not so many to start an All-Star Game at two different positions (he started at first base in 2008).

**SHORTSTOP: Derek Jeter (NYY), Asdrubal Cabrera (CLE), Elvis Andrus (TEX), Jhonny Peralta (DET), Marco Scutaro (BOS)**

Categories: batting average, OPS, runs, hits, doubles, triples, homers, RBIs, walks, steals, total bases and extra-base hits.

__Derek Jeter, 1 point__

• Jeter doesn't lead the AL in any of the categories, and does not place second through fifth in any of them. 0 points

• For all AL shortstops, Jeter is second or third in one category. 1 point

__Asdrubal Cabrera, 27 points__

• Cabrera doesn't lead the AL in any of the categories, but he does place second through fifth in one of them. 3 points

• For all AL shortstops, Cabrera leads in seven categories and is second or third in three of them. 24 points

__Jhonny Peralta, 11 points__

• Peralta doesn't lead the AL in any of the categories, and does not place second through fifth in any of them. 0 points

• At shortstop in the AL, Peralta leads in two categories and is second or third in five of them. 11 points

__Alexei Ramirez, 10 points__

• Ramirez doesn't lead the AL in any of the categories, and does not place second through fifth in any of them. 0 points

• For AL shortstops, Ramirez leads in one category and is second or third in seven of them. 10 points

**Conclusion:** Jeter has started for the AL in each of the past five seasons. If it's going to be six in a row, it will be based more on the totality of his career than his performance in 2011. Cabrera is having a career year, and based on his performance in the first half of the season, should be the AL's starter. Peralta and Ramirez are having years that might be worthy of a backup role on the team.

**Roger Schlueter** is senior researcher for MLB Productions. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.