The Mets receive an important reminder with Pete Alonso getting an All-Star nod

Deserving or not, Pete Alonso is one of the best at his position.
Houston Astros v New York Mets
Houston Astros v New York Mets / Luke Hales/GettyImages

Good for you, Polar Bear. Pete Alonso wasn’t exactly the best candidate to represent the New York Mets at this year’s All-Star Game. The “every team needs a representative” will always have this sort of impact. The positional needs in baseball, unlike some other sports, will often have less deserving players making it than ones who are more All-Star worthy.

Who really cares at the end of the day? It’s an exhibition game with lousy jerseys. The All-Star selection pretty much ensured Alonso will be in the Home Run Derby which was probably the goal of Major League Baseball anyway. 

You’re not wrong to feel like Alonso isn’t an All-Star or that Francisco Lindor or Brandon Nimmo or maybe even some others should’ve been there more. Looking at it a different way, this is a reminder of how tough it will be to replace Alonso because first basemen of his abilities aren’t in abundance.

Mets first baseman Pete Alonso is still one of the best at his position

Think it will be easy to move on from Alonso at the trade deadline or in free agency? His .789 OPS is seventh among qualified players at the position. His 18 home runs rank fourth. His 48 RBI is eighth.

Monster numbers in the past have made Alonso a constant consideration for the All-Star Game. Much like a Gold Glove is often handed to someone purely out of reputation, an All-Star selection can sometimes land in the lap of someone with name recognition. Alonso certainly has that.

Finding someone to replace Alonso’s production won’t be so easy. Sure, Christian Walker is having a better year and conveniently happens to be a free agent after this season. But he’s older than Alonso by a couple of years and as good as he is, doesn’t routinely post gigantic offensive numbers. Vladimir Guerrero Jr. is younger and while better in some aspects will probably end up costing much more than whatever Alonso gets in his next contract because of his age.

It hasn’t been a terrific year for first basemen. Usually a deep position, Matt Olson and Paul Goldschmidt are both well below where anyone would expect. We still have Freddie Freeman and the transition to first base for Bryce Harper brings one more superstar to the position.

This isn’t the 1990s anymore where every team seemed to have a first baseman capable of hitting .300 or swatting 40 home runs. It’s a shallow position.

As much as Alonso doesn’t feel like an All-Star, he remains one of the best first basemen in baseball even when he isn’t at his absolute best.