The 6 best Atlanta Braves who were never recognized as All-Stars

These Braves had a lot of success with the team. Sadly, they were never rewarded with an All-Star appearance.

Atlanta Braves v Chicago Cubs
Atlanta Braves v Chicago Cubs / David Banks/GettyImages
2 of 3

There have been a lot of good Braves over the years. While many have had great seasons rewarded with an All-Star appearance, there have been several Braves to play good baseball with the Braves and never make a Midsummer Classic.

But these six players not only never got a selection with the Braves, they never got a selection in the major leagues.

Best Braves position players to never make an All-Star Game

1. Andrelton Simmons

For four seasons, the Atlanta Braves had one of the best defensive players to ever take the field.

A second-round pick in 2010, Andrelton Simmons skyrocketed through the minor leagues, hitting well but defending even better. After the Tyler Pastornicky experiment failed, the Braves called up Simmons in May of 2012 and the rookie immediately wowed fans with his glove.

Simmons didn't hit quite as well as he did in the minors, as he slashed .256/.304/.362 with the Braves but put up 15.9 bWAR in less than four seasons. Despite getting multiple Gold Gloves and MVP votes in 2013, he didn't win the hearts of All-Star voters.

Despite continuing his great defense after being traded to the Angels and hitting at a slightly above-average rate, voters still never gave Simba his due.

2. Yunel Escobar

Philadelphia Phillies v Atlanta Braves
Philadelphia Phillies v Atlanta Braves / Kevin C. Cox/GettyImages

Yunel Escobar's tenure with the Braves was turbulent. On one hand, he was reportedly a difficult teammate. When he was traded in 2010, the clubhouse gave his replacement a standing ovation.

On the other hand, he was incredibly talented. In his first three seasons with the Braves, Escobar put up 9.1 fWAR. In that time, only Hanley Ramirez, Jimmy Rollins, José Reyes, and Troy Tulowitzki put up a higher WAR at SS in the NL.

Escobar hit 15% above league average and also played excellent defense at a premium position. Escobar only got two shots with the Braves at an All-Star selection, but he was certainly one of the better Braves without an appearance.

3. Jeff Francoeur

Arizona Diamondbacks v Atlanta Braves
Arizona Diamondbacks v Atlanta Braves / Scott Cunningham/GettyImages

For about 60 days in 2005, Braves fans truly believed Jeff Francoeur was the second coming of Babe Ruth. In the first month of his career, Frenchy slashed .403/.410/.810, good for a 222 wRC+. The RF hit eight homers, scored 20 runs, and knocked in 21.

Unfortunately, pitchers quickly learned that Francoeur had no plate discipline and they could throw the ball wherever they wanted and Frenchy would swing. In 2005, The Natural, as Sports Illustrated called him, had eight non-intentional walks.

He was never able to replicate his rookie-year success, but he was an RBI merchant. He had more than 100 RBIs in both 2006 and 2007, despite being below league average in 2006, and just slightly above league average in 2007.

Frenchy's best shot at an All-Star appearance came in 2007. While his advanced stats look less than impressive now, fans and players weren't looking up wRC+ in 2007. In 2007, fans would've seen a player who was hitting .289 with 58 RBIs and good defense (at least what fans considered at the time).

Instead, Barry Bonds, Carlos Beltrán, Ken Griffey Jr., Matt Holliday, Carlos Lee, Alfonso Soriano, and Aaron Rowand got the OF selections.

While Frenchy's playing career didn't turn out the way fans hoped, he's turned into an All-Star-level broadcaster.

4. Tommy Hanson

Chicago Cubs v Atlanta Braves
Chicago Cubs v Atlanta Braves / Scott Cunningham/GettyImages

In another world, Tommy Hanson is entering his 14th season in the majors, having had a decade of excellence from the month.

For the first three seasons, Hanson looked destined for stardom. In his first three seasons, he collected a cumulative 7.3 fWAR in 460.1 innings. He had a 3.28 ERA and won 32 games.

After a subpar 2012, however, the Braves traded him to the Angels for Jordon Walden, and after a poor 2013, Hanson threw his last pitch in the majors at just 27 years old. He tragically passed away in 2015.

Despite having solid overall seasons, his success never aligned with the Midsummer classic. He came up too late in the 2009 season to get All-Star Recognition, and his 2010 was fueled by a second half where he had a 2.51 ERA, despite the Braves only giving him a win in two of those games.

5. Kris Medlen

New York Mets v Atlanta Braves
New York Mets v Atlanta Braves / Mike Zarrilli/GettyImages

In 2012, Kris Medlen morphed into the second coming of Greg Maddux. "Med-Dog" opened the season in the bullpen and didn't make his first start that season until July 31, but once he got into the rotation, there wasn't a better starter in baseball.

From his first start until the end of the season, Medlen had a 0.97 ERA in 12 starts, had four straight starts without allowing an earned run, and had two complete games. The Braves won every single start, which helped push them into the first-ever Wild Card game. Medlen got the start, but we don't talk about what happened in that game.

Medlen carried over his success into the following season (albeit not nearly as dominant), finishing with a 3.11 ERA in 31 starts, but was somehow passed over for an All-Star selection.

Unfortunately, this would be the last full season Medlen would ever pitch. In 2014, he left a Spring Training start with a UCL injury that ended his season. He'd get non-tendered by the Braves after the season and signed with the Royals.

He returned to the mound in July 2015 to middling success. In 2016 he struggled in six starts before missing the rest of the year with injury.

Medlen returned to the Braves organization in 2017 but didn't make it back to the big leagues, struggling in the minors. He'd get one last stab in the bigs in 2018 with the Diamondbacks, getting one start, and allowing seven runs over four innings.

For a brief period, he was one of the best starters in the league, but he never stuck around long enough to make an All-Star roster.

6. Eric O'Flaherty

Atlanta Braves v Philadelphia Phillies
Atlanta Braves v Philadelphia Phillies / Rich Schultz/GettyImages

Chris Hammond set the Braves' franchise record for ERA (min. 50 innings) with a 0.95 ERA in 2002. Nine years later, Eric O'Flaherty just narrowly missed that record when he managed a 0.98 ERA in 2011.

O'Flaherty wasn't just an excellent reliever in 2011, either. During his first stint with the Braves, the lefty pitched 231 innings and had a 1.95 ERA during that tenure.

But, as Jonny Venters and Craig Kimbrel both made All-Star appearances, the first member of the acclaimed O'Ventebrel never got one.

In May 2013, O'Flaherty went down with a UCL injury that ended his season. He signed with the Oakland Athletics in 2014, and had an excellent season after returning from injury in July, finishing the season with a 2.50 ERA in 20 innings.

Unfortunately, this would be the last time he had a successful season. From 2015 until his final season in 2017, O'Flaherty had a 7.60 ERA in 77 innings with the A's, Mets, and Braves.

In his final season, the Braves held onto him just long enough for him to get his 10 years of service time.

More from House That Hank Built