Despite the dreadful season where the Cubs have had two streaks of nine losses or more, two players were selected to the 2022 All-Star Game in Los Angeles, California. Willson Contreras is the National League starting catcher, and Ian Happ was chosen as a reserve in the outfield. Both players deserved their spots.
Contreras is dominating the baseball this season, playing as one of the best catchers in the league.
Out of all qualified catchers, Contreras sits third in OPS, first in runs scored, third in hits, and second in doubles. To keep things short: he’s one of the best hitting catchers in baseball. His numbers excel when hitting at Wrigley. Contreras has hit eight of his 13 home runs at the Friendly Confines. In addition, 24 of his 35 RBIs have come at home, as well.
Fans adore Contreras whenever he takes the field or comes up to the plate. Since coming up in 2016, Contreras has played above average at the Catcher position, where hitting doesn’t come easy.
Fans realize how little time they have left to watch Contreras play at Wrigley. With the Cubs in sell mode, the trade deadline is rapidly approaching. Will Cubs fans see Contreras play after the All-Star break? Contreras might only make three All-Star games as a member of the Cubs.
After playing six seasons in the big leagues, Ian Happ is finally an All-Star. His career has been incredibly consistent, though, and one could argue he should have made an All-Star team already.
In a competitive outfield race, Ian Happ has been the second-best qualified left fielder during the season. Happ is posting his best batting average (.275) and on-base percentage (.365) of his entire career.
His .811 OPS is second among all left fielders, right behind Kyle Schwarber, a former Cubs outfielder who made the All-Star game this season.
Similar to Contreras, Happ excels at Wrigley Field, putting up superstar numbers at the Friendly Confines.
At home, Happ is batting .323, with a towering .491 slugging percentage that puts his OPS to .904. Happ is in a familiar spot to other former Cubs. He’s playing well for a bad team. Signs are pointing to Happ being traded to a contender, leaving the Cubs without a consistent option in left field for the season.
In a down year for MLB hitting, Happ continues to play well above league average. His spot on the All-Star roster was well deserved. Happ is playing like a star this season.