The LA Angels do not have many stars on their roster. Outside of Mike Trout, Andrelton Simmons has been their best player all season long, yet the MLB and their fans failed to invite him to the All Star Game.
The LA Angels mortgaged their future when they traded their top two pitching prospects to the Atlanta Braves for defensive specialist Andrelton Simmons. However, since coming to Anaheim, Simmons has become a true five tool ballplayer, improving on his offensive game to become a true force.
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This season has been Simmons best at the plate, and it isn’t even close. He is hitting .281 (tied for a career high), has smacked nine big flies (current best is 17 in 2013), and has only struck out 34 times while drawing 26 walks. Simmons came to the Angels as their number eight hitter. However, he has worked his way to the daily fifth slot in the lineup.
Simmons has also been very active on the basepaths, swiping 13 bags on the season. Before this season, he had only stolen 26 bases in his career. Simmons has been his usual defensive superstar, making some of the most difficult plays look routine.
While there are many great shortstops in the league, Simmons has been an under-the-radar stud. While the Houston Astros’ Carlos Correa and Cleveland’s Fransisco Lindor have been amazing, Simmons still deserves a spot on the team.
A case can be made that Simmons has been better than Lindor. Lindor is only batting .250 on the year. Simmons has been better defensively, and Lindor has only stolen three bases on the year. While Lindor is a young franchise cornerstone, his selection still seems premature.
Simmons is also hurt by the fact that half the country is asleep while he plays. First pitch in Anaheim is at around 7 o’clock. That means it is 10 PM on the East coast, causing his national recognition to slide.
Simmons is going into his prime as a ballplayer. At age 27, he will only continue to get better over the next few seasons. He could still make the roster if a player gets hurt. Even if he does not make it this year, Simmons will undoubtedly be playing in the All Star Game within the next few years.