Sleeper Candidates for the American League All-Star team

Derek Norris – Oakland Athletics

 

Coming into 2014, Derek Norris was a platoon guy in a 3-catcher mix with the A’s. Here in mid-June, Derek Norris is still just a platoon guy in a 3-catcher mix with the A’s. Here’s the catch — in his limited but successful opportunities, Norris has been phenomenal. 11 AL catchers have more plate appearances than him this year, yet he is tied for 1st among all of them in home runs with 8. His 14.9% walk rate is tops among all catchers with at least 190 plate appearances, and his .307/.409/.521 triple-slash line is fantastic. Norris ranks 9th in games played for backstops, and yet he is tied for 1st in WAR with Salvador Perez. Norris has been amazing all year for the A’s, and if my pitch to get him to Minnesota doesn’t work, maybe his eye-popping 165 wRC+ will do the trick.

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