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MLB All-Star Game: Best All-Stars in Orioles history

The Orioles have four players going to the All-Star Game this year. Here is a look back at the best of the best.

2005 B-Rob was the best B-Rob.
2005 B-Rob was the best B-Rob.
Jamie Squire/Getty Images

The Baltimore Orioles have had a lot of good players in their history, and a lot of All-Stars. Some of their All-Stars have been laughable (I'm looking at you, Ty Wigginton and Tony Batista), but for the most part our Birds have been well qualified for their nomination to the midsummer classic. Here is a look at the best player from each position who has represented the Orioles in the All-Star Game. Let's call it the All-Star roster of Orioles All-Stars.

Catcher: 1989 Mickey Tettleton

Mickey Tettleton had his best season as an Oriole in 1989 and was a big part of the Why Not season.  He destroyed American League pitching in the first half to the tune of a .255/.368/.528 hitting line with 15 home runs and 12 doubles. He cooled down in the second half but still finished the season with an .877 OPS. Tettleton wasn't the starting catcher in the ASG as the fans voted in the much less productive Terry Steinbach, but he was the most valuable catcher in the AL that year according to fWAR. 1989 was the first of two All-Star appearances for Tettleton, and his only one as an Oriole.

Honorable Mention: 2011 Matt Wieters

Other Orioles catchers in the All-Star Game: Gus Triandos (‘57-‘59); Andy Etchebarren (‘66, ‘67), Terry Kennedy (‘87).

First Base: 1961 Jim Gentile

Jim Gentile's 1961 season is one of the best single seasons in Orioles history. Big Jim had a monster first half of the season, hitting .306/.423/.629 with 22 home runs and he was somehow not the starting first baseman in the ASG. Norm Cash of the Detroit Tigers was actually having a better season at the plate, if you can believe it. Gentile finished the 1961 season with a third-place MVP finish to go with his 46 home runs and 1.069 OPS.

Honorable Mentions: ‘98 Rafael Palmeiro; ‘13 Chris Davis

Other Orioles first basemen in the All-Star Game: Norm Siebern (‘64); Boog Powell (‘68-'71); Eddie Murray (‘78, ‘81-'86).

Second Base: 2005 Brian Roberts

Choosing between ‘05 Brian Roberts and ‘74 Bobby Grich was almost impossible as their offensive numbers were nearly identical. I decided to go with the player that had the hotter first half, which led to his All-Star selection. That player was Brian Roberts, who had a scorching first half in '05. He hit .345/.416/.591 with 15 home runs before the All-Star Game, which is kind of unbelievable. Those 15 home runs is more than he had total in any total season other than 2009, when he hit 16. Of course, with the second half came a swoon from both the Orioles and Roberts, ending with his horrific elbow injury in September. But it was a hell of a first half, and B-Rob was awarded with a starting gig in the All-Star Game.

Honorable Mention: 1974 Bobby Grich

Other Orioles second basemen in the All-Star Game: Davey Johnson (‘68-'70); Roberto Alomar (‘96-'98).

Third Base: 1964 Brooks Robinson

Brooks Robinson was good in most of the years of his career, but in 1964 he was crazy good. Defense is the first thing you think of when it comes to Brooks, but in ‘64 he was a bonafide slugger. He hit a career-high 28 home runs, which lead all AL third basemen. Both his slugging (.521) and his OBP (.368) were the highest marks of his career, and he did it all while being one of the best defensive players in baseball.  Brooks appeared in the All-Star Game every season from 1960-'74.

Other Orioles third basemen in the All-Star Game: George Kell (‘56-'57); Cal Ripken (‘97-'01); Tony Batista (‘02); Melvin Mora (‘05); Ty Wigginton (‘10); Manny Machado (‘13, ‘15).

Shortstop: 1991 Cal Ripken

If you're sorting by fWAR, Cal Ripken's 1991 season was the best season by a position player in the history of the Baltimore Orioles. It's the only 10+ WAR season in Orioles history. It was such a good season, in fact, that he was awarded the MVP despite playing on a team that only won 67 games. In the first half he slugged nearly .600 and had an OBP over .400. He was crazy good, and of course started the All-Star Game (he started at shortstop every year from ‘84-'96). When it was all said and done, Cal had hit 46 doubles and 34 home runs, all while playing world class defense.

Other Orioles shortstops in the All-Star Game: Ron Hansen (‘60); Luis Aparicio (‘63-'64); Bobby Grich (‘72); Mark Belanger (‘76); Mike Bordick (‘00); Miguel Tejada (‘04-'06); J.J. Hardy (‘13).

Outfield: 1966 Frank Robinson, 1969 Frank Robinson, 1996 Brady Anderson

Since the current rules for the All-Star Game is to select any three outfielders and not a RF, CF, and LF, that's the rule I picked. It shouldn't surprise you that Frank Robinson is on there twice, since he is the greatest baseball player to ever wear an Orioles uniform. In 1966 Robinson won MVP and the Triple Crown with his .316 batting average, 49 home runs, and 122 RBI. He also scored 122 runs and lead the league in on-base percentage, slugging percentage, and for good measure, sacrifice flies.

Though he didn't lead the world in baseball stats in 1969, his first half looked a lot like his full season numbers in ‘66. He went into the All-Star break with 20 home runs and a batting line of .328/.426/.587 which helped earn him the start in the ASG. In his career Frank played in 12 All-Star games, which five coming as an Oriole (‘66-'67, ‘69-'71).

Brady Anderson's career year was 1996, and it was one of the best outfield seasons in Orioles history. Not only did he hit 50 home runs, but he fell just .004 short of having a season OBP of .400. He hit 30 of his 50 dingers before the All-Star break with an OPS of 1.081. He was really good. Brady appeared in three All-Star Games for the Orioles in ‘92, ‘96, and ‘97.

Honorable Mentions: 1969 Paul Blair

Other Orioles outfielders in the All-Star Game: Gene Woodling (‘59); Jackie Brand (‘61); Paul Blair (‘69, ‘73); Don Buford (‘71); Ken Singleton (‘77, ‘79, ‘81); Al Bumbry (‘80); B.J. Surhoff (‘99); Melvin Mora (‘03); Adam Jones (‘09, ‘12-'15).

Starting Pitcher: 1975 Jim Palmer

Hall of Famer Jim Palmer appeared in six All-Star Games in his Orioles career and started three of them. The best year of those was his Cy Young award winning season of 1975. That year Palmer lead the league with a 2.09 ERA (169 ERA+) and pitched an astounding 10 complete-game shutouts. He was selected to start the All-Star Game on the strength of his first half, which turned out to be not quite as good as his second half. He didn't even give up a grand slam that year! Palmer also appeared in All-Star Games in 1970-'72 and ‘77-'78.

Other Orioles starting pitchers in the All-Star Game: Bob Turley ('54); Jim Wilson ('55); Billy Loes ('57); Billy O'Dell ('58-'59); Jerry Walker ('59); Chuck Estrada ('60); Milt Pappas ('62, '65); Steve Barber ('63, '64); Dave McNally ('69-'70, '72); Mike Cuellar ('70-'71, '74); Pat Dobson ('72); Mike Flanagan ('78); Steve Stone ('80); Scott McGregor ('81); Mike Boddicker ('84); Don Aase ('86); Mike Mussina ('92-'94, '97, '99); Chris Tillman ('13).