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  1. And of course, R.A “6-0″ Dickey should make it too. :)

    Comment by Dan Lewis — June 25, 2010 @ 4:38 pm

  2. I don’t know dude, i think I rather would see Carlos Silva myself. That is a once in a lifetime experience.

    Comment by Sean — June 25, 2010 @ 4:39 pm

  3. “And yet, you can’t realistically make a statistical case that Strasburg should make the all-star team next year.”

    I believe you mean next week.

    Comment by Phillies Red — June 25, 2010 @ 4:39 pm

  4. Fixed. Thanks.

    Comment by Carson Cistulli — June 25, 2010 @ 4:46 pm

  5. Well, shouldn’t Dunn get the nod over Strasburg? They’re last place in their division, and you can’t really believe they deserve more than one all-star. He can be in the homerun derby, and put on a show.

    Jimenez, Halladay, Gallardo, Lincecum, Wainwright, Carpenter, Oswalt(only Astro deserving)… and Cain, Garcia, Dickey…

    It’s the freaking all-star game, and it shouldn’t be a popularity contest. If the guy had 10-12 games under his belt and was this dominant, fine…

    And the glorified theater as you call it, well, it means something when they’re considering you for the Hall of Fame.

    Comment by Kyle — June 25, 2010 @ 5:00 pm

  6. It’s not that I don’t disagree with you, because I don’t. I think Strasburg should be in the game for many reasons. But I don’t see Charlie Manual (or any other manager for that matter) picking Stephen Strasburg over a guy like Matt Cain. I’ve looked over it and run the numbers for the number of realistic spots available on the pitching staff and Strasburg would have to beat out some hefty competition. Not very managers would make that call.

    Comment by Kenny — June 25, 2010 @ 5:10 pm

  7. This sounds like a variant of the argument used for the soon-to-retire types. I’d just as soon have those guys included in that fan vote for the final spot race.

    Comment by Rick — June 25, 2010 @ 5:11 pm

  8. I think the fact that it counts strengthens the argument for Strasburg. When it was literally just an exhibition, okay, vote in the people who are having the best seasons. Now though? If you really want to win put in the best players, not the guys who have just had good first halfs. That means guys like Teixeira should still get in and guys like Strasburg(and possibly Carlos Santana) should also make it.

    Comment by Jilly — June 25, 2010 @ 5:19 pm

  9. Pardon me if I misinterpreted you, but are you implying that being last place in a division means your team should have no more than one all-star? I don’t understand that at all; what if the two best players in the game are on your team?

    I agree that the all-star game shouldn’t be a popularity contest, but it is. If there were strict rules about who could be admitted, then fine, Strasburg would probably be out. But there are few rules. The hoi polloi gets to choose who plays.

    In my ideal world the all-star game would actually be the best players in the game, but that’s not the way it goes, so it turns out to be a bunch of players whose names are known. If Bud Selig and the BBWAA want to make stupid decisions based on the game (and given that their decisions are often stupid in general, it’s not surprising that they do), that’s just too bad.

    Comment by C — June 25, 2010 @ 5:21 pm

  10. Dickey? I cant tell if you’re serious Kyle. Plus Dunn wouldnt be the rep for the Nats, it would clearly be Zimm.

    If you assume 9 SPs you got Halladay, Ubaldo, Lincecum, Wainwright, and Oswalt are guarantees. Carpenter and Josh Johnson are pretty damn close to them too.
    I cant imagine 3 Cardinal starters go, so I’m discountign Garcia, but thats just a gut feeling.
    So that last 2 spots will be taken by Cain, Gallardo, Hudson (dont forget about the veteran presence there), and Strasburg as the wildcard.
    A guy like Charlie? I think he is taking Cain and Hudson, but I wonder if he will be feeling some pressure from up above to put Strasburg on the card.

    Comment by Ryan — June 25, 2010 @ 5:21 pm

  11. The guys you’re considering for the 10th pitcher on your league’s team generally aren’t the ones you’re worried about making HOF arguments for.

    If it’s truly an all-star game, make it one. Get rid of the fan vote and hold managers accountable for doing ridiculous things like picking their own guys. But, since this is the system we have, which results in ties and called games, it IS glorified theater. And the greatest entertainers should be there. I’m a huge Giants fan, and I absolutely love Matt Cain, but given what the All-Star game IS, Strassburg absolutely should be there.

    Comment by Dave — June 25, 2010 @ 5:21 pm

  12. But I wont be surprised one bit if Strasburg is put on the “Final spot” ballot, which the league knows he will take in a walk. In fact, I’m certain that will be what happens.

    Comment by Ryan — June 25, 2010 @ 5:23 pm

  13. I’m strongly of the opinion that all-stars should be chosen using some objective standard.

    And I can’t think of an objective standard that would select Strasburg that wouldn’t be a huge mess in other years.

    No to Strasburg at the All-Star Game.

    Comment by Llewdor — June 25, 2010 @ 5:25 pm

  14. I appreciate the argument that the game really doesn’t matter because of fan voting and managers selecting their own players going. I understand the attendance argument as well.

    But why is it the worst thing in the world if he (and everyone else) has to wait until next year when he’s rightfully earned it? Why shouldn’t Dunn, Clippard, or Capps be the one/two representatives of the Nationals – guys who have been helping the team get to near .500 since the beginning of the season. Why should the Matt Cain’s of the world be told – yeah, you had a good year but Strasburg is more interest.

    How would you feel if that happened to a bonus you worked so hard to get? Sorry. You earned it by overall sales figures, but John Smith over there landed those 2 accounts no one had landed before.

    The guy is good, my bet is next year (when he has had more than 7-8 starts before the all-star game) he will get his first of many all-star pitchers.

    Everyone waited until June for him to start in the majors…everyone can wait until July 2011 for his first all-star appearance. Trust me, It wont kill you…though it may feel like it.

    Comment by deckholm — June 25, 2010 @ 5:28 pm

  15. I was kidding about Dickey, not Dunn… I’m betting anything that Ryan Howard is an all-star, but Dunn actually does more with far less talent. And Zimm deserves it, but Dunn constantly gets overlooked. And the guy would bash in the homerun derby.

    As for Dickey, I think it would be hilarious for a 35 year old knuckle baller to make an all-star team. He is undefeated sporting a record of 6-0 with a 2.33 ERA!

    But no way Manuel would ever pick a rookie who’ll have I believe 5 starts under his belt… he’s too old school.

    Comment by Kyle — June 25, 2010 @ 5:29 pm

  16. Why is everyone forgetting how good Zimm is?

    Comment by Ryan — June 25, 2010 @ 5:30 pm

  17. Crazy suggestion time: can MLB perhaps go to a format like the NBA ASG where you have rookies (anyone with <1 year of service) playing against young veterans?

    You would then get to see your Strasburgs, Heywards, Stantons, Boeschs, etc. and put them up against players like Rasmus, Bruce, etc. You may have to expand the service time window to fill out both teams. You still have the ASG, but you also have this game (along with the Futures game) so the number of players you get to see expands.

    Comment by DonDolmes — June 25, 2010 @ 5:36 pm

  18. Honestly, because I don’t follow the Nationals all that closely. Dunn (for whatever reason) is one of the first guys that comes to mind when I think of the Nats offense. Zimmerman is a very good player – and shouldn’t be forgotten.

    One last thing. The Nationals knew that (in addition to the arb clock not starting right away) starting him in the minors could mean he wouldn’t go to the all-star game if he started off well. It sucks if your him that both those happened, but he could/will still be the rookie of the year if he keeps it up – so it’s not like he’s not being recognized for the talent he is.

    Comment by deckholm — June 25, 2010 @ 5:37 pm

  19. Just checked the voting, and the AL is projecting to field their best possible lineup.


    That is sickeningly good. (Though Cabrera should be at DH).

    The NL is iffy. While you can’t really complain with Pujols, Utley, Ramirez, or Braun, none of them are having great years by their standards.

    No NL catcher stands out (Molina, McCann, and Pudge lead the voting).

    The biggest problem is at third where Zimmerman should be the hands down favorite, yet somehow Placido freaking Polanco retains a lead over Wright.

    I would have liked to see


    I will have to settle for lesser, and perhaps one inning of Strasburg magic.

    Comment by Chair — June 25, 2010 @ 5:42 pm

  20. Ok, but given that they currently are not chosen by objective criteria, why should we enforce the non-existent rule when it leads to a bad result, as in this case?

    Comment by Anon21 — June 25, 2010 @ 5:44 pm

  21. Heyward is not all star caliber at this time. I understand he’s already got the votes though.

    Strasburg in the all star game wouldn’t jive with his IP management. I think it’s best if he doesn’t play.

    Ubaldo, Johnson, Lincecum, Oswalt, Carpenter, Halladay, Wainwright, Garcia, Silva, Marmol

    He’s completely unneccesary. Probably a few other closers I’m not thinking of.

    Without Hoffman, the NL has a chance. He’s blown 2 of the last few all star games.

    Comment by joeiq — June 25, 2010 @ 5:49 pm

  22. “And perhaps the last great, organic moment at the ASG that wasn’t immediately ruined by a brutal speech from the commissioner was the Randy Johnson-John Kruk match-up in 1993. ”

    What about Pedro in ’99? Was there a speech I’m forgetting?

    Anyway I completely agree with the post in regards to Strasburg. At this point I’m far more interested in the Futures Game than the All-Star game.

    Comment by Joseph — June 25, 2010 @ 5:53 pm

  23. I think you can securely put Josh Johnson in the guarantee category. Is there a single argument to be made that he isn’t having one of the top 9 years for starting pitchers in the NL?

    Comment by Brian — June 25, 2010 @ 5:56 pm

  24. At least at the All Star Game, he wouldn’t be facing AAAA lineups. I say put him on the roster and see how he performs against real talent.

    Comment by PJ — June 25, 2010 @ 5:56 pm

  25. You buying that Silva is as good as his era?

    Agree about Strasburg not being necessary , but If Wakefield can make it why not Steven?

    You definitely need Gallardo, and Broxton. It’s also difficult to take three Cardinals starters and no Braves. Heath Bell too.

    Comment by Chair — June 25, 2010 @ 5:57 pm

  26. You dumb.

    Comment by Chair — June 25, 2010 @ 5:59 pm

  27. I think the worst part is that if the voting ended today one could probably make a better NL lineup with the players that did not make the team then with the players that did.

    Fielder DH

    Comment by Chair — June 25, 2010 @ 6:06 pm

  28. There will be ~15 NL pitchers. ~5-6 relief pitchers and ~9 SP.


    Now you have to choose Strasburg over guys like Cain, Gallardo, Garcia, Kershaw, Hanson, Sanchez, Santana, and Haren. There’s like 2 or 3 available spots from that group.

    Comment by Kenny — June 25, 2010 @ 6:09 pm

  29. Silva? Are you kidding?

    Would you kindly scan that list to find Silva’s war? Hint: it’s isn’t in the top ten.

    Comment by RackOLam — June 25, 2010 @ 6:09 pm

  30. I agree and the main point should be “is he an all star?” the answer is yes. He will only pitch one inning so his innings management is not an issue. I would like the All Star to go back to being a game of fun with the caveat it cant end in a tie and the point about the matchup between Johnson versus Kruk is very good one, lol. I would like to see a rookie allstar game before the All star game, make rookies play in the rookie game even if AAA players were required, just my 2 cents.

    Comment by oompaloopma — June 25, 2010 @ 6:11 pm

  31. Okay, color me confused.

    Comment by TCQ — June 25, 2010 @ 6:14 pm

  32. “Since it doesn’t really count”

    Home field advantage doesn’t matter all of the sudden?

    Comment by Zack — June 25, 2010 @ 6:18 pm

  33. Have you seen him pitch? He has the sickest breaking ball that I have seen in a long time. He only throws a fastball 99 with movement, his only drawback is his 90 off speed pitch which usually sinks with last second movement.

    Comment by oompaloopma — June 25, 2010 @ 6:33 pm

  34. Both Wright and Zimmerman deserve to be there over Polanco who is not in their league. But why is Zimmerman the “hands down” favorite for third? I think Wright deserves it over Zimmerman. Wright has generally been the better third baseman over the last few years. Right now, his and Zimmerman’s WAR are the same.

    Comment by CaseyB — June 25, 2010 @ 6:40 pm

  35. “As for Dickey, I think it would be hilarious for a 35 year old knuckle baller to make an all-star team.”

    Well, a 42 year old knuckleballer made an all-star team last year . . .

    Comment by DavidJ — June 25, 2010 @ 6:42 pm

  36. a better question would be to fans of the NL teams.

    You have a one run lead.

    Who would you rather have pitching the 5th inning – Cain or Strasburg?

    He doesn’t deserve to be there in the context of earning it, but if the NL wants to win the game for the first time.. ever? (seems like it)

    then don’t you HAVE to select Strasburg?

    Comment by quint — June 25, 2010 @ 6:43 pm

  37. Ichiro doesn’t deserve to start… Nelson Cruz or Magglio Ordonez deserve to start considering they actually play for teams in the playoff race. Oh, and their overall numbers destroy his(Cruz in half the at-bats). Beltre could easily start over Longoria, because he is hitting .342.

    Jeter is hitting only .279, but he doesn’t have much competition so he gets a pass.

    Heyward isn’t all-star caliber, and Rolen deserves to start just as much as Zimmerman. All that considering, if you’re in last place you get one(maybe two all-stars if it’s close.)

    Strasburg would be a laughable choice right now… 4 games into his career, and he’s faced two last place teams, the Royals who are horrible offensively, and one good team in the White Sox. If he had one hit the Yankees or Red Sox, or even beaten Roy Halladay and the Phillies, I’d be a lil more impressed.

    Comment by Kyle — June 25, 2010 @ 6:52 pm

  38. Yeah I realized this after I said it. Though just a week or two ago Zimmerman was hot and had a clear edge with the bat. I consider him the best defensive third baseman as well. But yeah, they are basically even right now. Come on Mets fans, don’t let the Phills win this!!!!

    Comment by Chair — June 25, 2010 @ 7:00 pm

  39. Or, Alex Rios since he’s top 5 in WAR and is very handsome.

    Comment by dickey simpkins — June 25, 2010 @ 7:04 pm

  40. Throwing away the stupid “it counts” garbage, the ASG is first and foremost a spectacle meant to showcase the games’ most exciting players. Strasburg belongs in that category. Anyone who doesn’t want to see Strasburg pitch to A-Rod, Hamilton, or Mauer is off their rocker.

    Comment by dickey simpkins — June 25, 2010 @ 7:08 pm

  41. Well, I was trying to inject just a little realism into whom I wanted for the Allstar game, and we know this is not the universe where Nelson Cruz can beat Ichiro. I agree Rolen should be an allstar, but I would still give Zimmerman an edge.

    I would argue that Heyward is all-star caliber, definitely in talent and probably in production before his recent slide. I feel ok with him over Werth or Holliday.

    I don’t buy Beltre over Longoria for a second, and this from a guy who campaigns for his team to bring back Beltre every year since he left the Dodgers. That batting average is just not sustainable.

    I may have overstated the AL best possible lineup thing, but you have to admit it is looking pretty favorable to what one would want.

    Comment by Chair — June 25, 2010 @ 7:09 pm

  42. Exactly right.

    Comment by Chair — June 25, 2010 @ 7:09 pm

  43. If you choose lineups just by current year WAR, they look like:


    A. Gonzalez
    Tulo (Hanley in 2nd is the choice with the Tulo injury)
    Zimmerman/Wright (tied)
    Pujols (most valuable remaining batter)

    I am not in any way advocating for this list. Most of these guys should be All Stars and there are positions where the player on this list is the clear cut selection, but the All Star game is not named the Player At His Position Who Is Having The Best Season So Far game for a reason.

    I do think this list helps with regard to some of the discussion here though. There is no way Zimmerman is a superior choice to Wright and vice versa Both are clearly superior to Polanco in both current season performance and star power though.

    McCann is the obvious NL starter at catcher, hands down. Even with his struggles, he’s having the best season and he pretty clearly is the better overall player. Hanley making the team over Tulo is not a travesty, especially in light of the Tulo injury.

    And, the AL list is impressive. Longoria is a close second to Beltre in WAR. Ichiro is the best rightfielder in the league. Jeter making the team over Scutaro is fine. And, everyone else is on the list. Part of this, though, is that there is a true star at most AL positions having a great season whereas many of the true stars in the NL are having slow starts.

    Comment by Jake R — June 25, 2010 @ 7:11 pm

  44. Good list Jake, I have no problem with Jeter. No one else is having even close to an allstar season in the AL at shortstop unless they want to put Michael Young back there?

    I like Beltre over Longoria(who will make the team either way), but feel he’s kept the Red Sox in it. Beckett has been a no-show, Ellsbury is injured, Drew is Drew, Ortiz hits .250, and until recently Pedrioa wasn’t himself.

    Still think everyone is forgetting Rolen who was like Ozzie Smith defensively for years but could rake. Agree with Tulo over Hanley, but the injury destroyed that.

    Comment by Kyle — June 25, 2010 @ 7:22 pm

  45. Right, because when you face the two teams with the lowest K% in baseball and rack up 19 strike outs against them (in 180 pitches), you obviously need to face real competition to prove your metal.

    Comment by philosofool — June 25, 2010 @ 7:25 pm

  46. A-Rod?

    Afraid unless Girardi pulls a Torre and chooses all Yankees, he won’t be there. Longoria, Beltre and Michael Young are all having better seasons.

    And Strasburg wouldn’t have the balls to call him out like Schilling did years ago and then struck his fake a** out with 97, 98, 98 mph fastballs.

    Dude actually said all fastballs right down the middle…

    Comment by Kyle — June 25, 2010 @ 7:30 pm

  47. “And perhaps the last great, organic moment at the ASG that wasn’t immediately ruined by a brutal speech from the commissioner was the Randy Johnson-John Kruk match-up in 1993.”

    I would like to counter with Pedro’s five straight Ks.

    Also, Ripken’s grooved home run was actually cool.

    Comment by philkid3 — June 25, 2010 @ 7:46 pm

  48. Because it makes the selection arbitrary.

    Comment by Llewdor — June 25, 2010 @ 7:52 pm

  49. “prove your metal.” lol

    Comment by Joseph — June 25, 2010 @ 8:00 pm

  50. Bravo, can’t be said better.

    Comment by Chair — June 25, 2010 @ 8:25 pm

  51. I only waded through the first 20 comments so my apologies if this was covered…

    Are we sure Strasburg would even pitch if elected? The Nats are holding a considerable cash cow in Strasburg and he happens to be on a pretty strict innings/pitches cap. I would think the Nats will try very hard to persuade him not to alter his routine so he can pitch the 5th inning of a game he’ll be going to for the foreseeable future.

    Comment by The A Team — June 25, 2010 @ 8:33 pm

  52. If it counts, he should be in, since he’s been as dominant as a pitcher can be.

    If it’s an exibition, he should be in. There’s no other player that the fans want to see as much … especially going against the best hitters in the AL.

    If it’s a “reward” for the best first half, then he should be on the waiting list.

    If it’s a popularty contest, he has a case to be in.

    I don’t normally watch the ASG, but I would to see Strasburg face the AL’s best .. just out of curiosity of how he will fare.

    Problem is, there’s no consensus on what the ASG is.

    Comment by CircleChange11 — June 25, 2010 @ 8:40 pm

  53. I like.

    Comment by Chair — June 25, 2010 @ 8:58 pm

  54. Or say he finds his way into the game… and he walks a guy, throws a wild pitch, and gives up a few bombs to Hamilton and Longoria…

    He becomes Rick Ankiel. They’d be retarded to even consider letting him play in the all-star game. All the hype that came with his first start wasn’t that big of a deal, because he faced the Pirates. His next outing was against Cleveland and he walked 5 guys in 5 innings.

    Comment by Kyle — June 25, 2010 @ 9:16 pm

  55. Wow, Scutaro leads AL SS in WAR? I need to check those charts more often.

    Comment by Htpp — June 25, 2010 @ 10:19 pm

  56. Oh my bad. Let’s give him his Hall of Fame plaque after 4 freakin’ starts because we all know, young pitchers who put up good numbers after 4 starts are Hall of Famers.

    Comment by PJ — June 25, 2010 @ 10:28 pm

  57. You need a better grasp of the English language.

    Comment by PJ — June 25, 2010 @ 10:28 pm

  58. Baseball needs to figure out what they want the All Star team to be. RIght now, its… broken.

    Either its
    A. A game that counts for something
    B. An exhibition game that doesnt count for something.

    Cant be both. They are trying it that way, and .. it isnt working. First, whats wrong with a tie? That speaks tons towards parity (not parody) that Bud has preached all along.

    IF IT COUNTS – Then the rosters shouldnt be a “popularity vote”, nor should there be the mandatory one from each team. Field a Yankees/Redsox team with a few others as fill-ins for the AL and the NL make an all Marlins team.. (wait, only Loria thinks they are Worldseries talent!! :p) well, do similar for NL. Then, winner takes home the prize.. Homefield in WS (as the prize is now) or some other prize.

    IF IT DOESNT COUNT – Then make it pure popularity vote. make the rosters insane sized. heck, go 60. Make sure at least ONE from each team is in, BUT, no more than 5 (for national fans to see more than “the token Pirate” for example). Have the first 90% done by ballot, as it stands. The last 10% is for “future stars” who arent on the opening day ballot (example, Strasburg). That way there is no “OMG, He is good, but he isnt deserving yet, not over “player-x” who is deserving, though young. If this 10% isnt used in this manner (not enough studs in minors, or very recent callups, etcetc).. then its manager discretion. And, instead of winning “home field” in the WS, the winner in this version, Each member of the team, play or not, gets an ALL-Expenses trip to (pick one) Vegas, Disneyland (or Disneyworld), Host city of Allstar game (after season). Picking up the tab would be MLB.

    Comment by Cidron — June 25, 2010 @ 10:29 pm

  59. The kid has 4 starts. After 5 Start strech in his rookie season, Kerry Wood had 60Ks in 35IP. Strasburg isn’t the first pitcher to take the league by storm. Sorry, I’m not anointing this guy a Hall of Famer after 4 STARTS.

    Comment by PJ — June 25, 2010 @ 10:36 pm

  60. Who is making him a HoFer? We’re talking about wheer he should be on the NL roster for an exhibition game of star players.

    You’re making a rther obvious strawman arguement here, unless you don’ see a diff btw All-Star and HoF.

    Comment by CircleChange11 — June 25, 2010 @ 10:48 pm

  61. He becomes Rick Ankiel.


    Comment by CircleChange11 — June 25, 2010 @ 10:49 pm

  62. As a thought exercise, I keep wondering how people would feel if this was an established, dominant pitcher we were talking about. Like what if Roy Halladay had missed the first two months of the season and then came back and posted these numbers?

    I feel like people would feel it’s less obscene because “hey, it’s Halladay we’re talking about here”

    Comment by Resolution — June 25, 2010 @ 11:10 pm

  63. I said virtually the same thing on my podcast today. I think it’s 100% OK for him to be considered and I don’t understand those against his consideration but I think he just might not make it with so many candidates ahead of him:

    Ubaldo, Halladay, Lincecum, Wainwright, Carpenter, JJohnson, Gallardo just to name a ton.

    But he merits consideration because it is supposed to be for the fans. If gets in it’d be great, if he doesn’t it’s not some major travesty.

    Comment by Paul — June 25, 2010 @ 11:25 pm

  64. Roy Halladay has never made an all-star team where he didn’t pitch the first half(and wouldn’t.) He made a few where he had amazing first halves and got injured. One year he was 12-4 with a 2.45 ERA or something.

    Last year, Chris Carpenter didn’t make the all-star team when he was 7-3, a 2.47 ERA, 13 starts(with only 13 walks and 4 homeruns allowed.) So your argument makes no sense. Oh yeah, he also had an insane WHIP of .873. He is a former Cy Young winner, and one of the best pitchers in baseball.

    Santana didn’t get in his first year in the NL, because the Mets didn’t give him any run support and he was 8-7 with an ERA of 2.84. It’s happened to Oswalt, and other aces. I just destroyed your pathetic argument, Resolution.

    Comment by Kyle — June 25, 2010 @ 11:47 pm

  65. Chill dude, I said it like that on purpose, and was just trying to match your snarky anti NL ness with some you dumb ness. I don’t care bout proper english sucker.

    Comment by Chair — June 25, 2010 @ 11:48 pm

  66. Think of it like yo momma.

    Comment by Chair — June 25, 2010 @ 11:52 pm

  67. A guy with 4 effing starts in the big leagues is not worthy to make the All-Star game. Jason Heyward with his Playstation like numbers(sarcasm) doesn’t deserve to make it either. He’s hitting .255 with 11 homeruns… wow.

    But hey, the fans want it!

    Comment by Kyle — June 26, 2010 @ 12:03 am

  68. Ouch.

    Also, I’m not really sure you actually addressed what I said – especially considering I wasn’t really arguing anything.

    I never claimed Halladay made an all-star team despite missing the first half.

    Also, the numbers you cited for Carpenter and Santana, (and even their numbers you didn’t cite) aren’t quite at the same level that Strasburg has produced so far – which was a pretty central component of my comment/thought.

    Having said that, the fact that someone like Carpenter got snubbed last season does lend some support to the notion that people wouldn’t be more willing to give a veteran a pass.

    Comment by Resolution — June 26, 2010 @ 12:08 am

  69. Can’t agree more. Strasburg might not deserve to make the team yet, but the fans deserve the opportunity to see him in it. It’s just an All-Star game after all.

    Comment by Alex — June 26, 2010 @ 12:34 am

  70. Lets nt forget, in those four starts, three were vs the Pirates, the Royals and Cleveland.. those teams batters will make alot of pitchers look like All-Stars

    Comment by Cidron — June 26, 2010 @ 12:51 am

  71. I wanted to chime in on the Strasburg idea. As a fan who generally has little interest in the All Star game as anything other than a 3 day break from a long season of watching baseball, I would turn on the game if Strasburg were in it.

    I think the argument for him begins and ends with the fact that he is simply the most interesting player to watch play the game right now. That, by itself, is a reason for him to get selected.

    Comment by Jake R — June 26, 2010 @ 1:00 am

  72. I must disagree with the game having lost its luster. About 25 years ago when the managers decided getting everyone in the game was the most important goal, they very nearly ruined it. Culminating in the 2002 tie debacle. Since changing to “This time it counts” the game has started to recapture some of what made it so great for its first fifty years.

    Comment by mowill — June 26, 2010 @ 1:26 am

  73. I already mentioned the teams he’s faced… if he’s so great he wouldn’t want an undeserved selection. Why F over guys like Carpenter(two years it’s happened), Oswalt(twice as well), Gallardo, Cain(who’s slowly evolving as an ace), or guys far more deserving?

    If they want to add two or three spots so we can have swan songs for old guys like Cal Ripken Jr. or let rookies who’ve pitched in 4 games(LeBron didn’t even make the allstar team his rookie season)… FINE.

    But right now, it’s not fair to those more deserving. Wait til he faces the Phillies or the Cards, let’s see how good he really is.

    So far he’s faced the unstoppable Pirates with Jeff Karstens(and his career 5 ERA), David Huff who sports an ERA of over 6, and the walking dead Indians. Let’s see… who else… Floyd and the White Sox(got a no decision while being matched by Floyd) and of course Bannister and the Royals known for their hitting. He lost to Bannister…

    I’d put away those anointing oils, and let the guy pitch at least 20 games before you rename the Cy Young Award after him.

    Comment by Kyle — June 26, 2010 @ 1:39 am

  74. Yeah, except for the fact that Cain is still a better pitcher at the major league level than Strasburg.

    Comment by jaybow — June 26, 2010 @ 2:03 am

  75. When has the All-Star game not been an exhibition or “theater?”

    Comment by KS — June 26, 2010 @ 2:16 am

  76. Wow. Uncalled for. I’m glad your Mariners are awful this year, Dave.

    Comment by [yeah]45 — June 26, 2010 @ 2:58 am

  77. I bet you anything this guy is Dusty Baker.

    Comment by Chet — June 26, 2010 @ 12:06 pm

  78. HA! you showed him! *high five*

    Comment by Chet — June 26, 2010 @ 12:09 pm

  79. Obviously he meant “you’re.”

    Comment by Spoilt Victorian Child — June 26, 2010 @ 1:54 pm

  80. Of course the selections are already arbitrary…unless you think Josh Hamilton leading for a good chunk in the voting last year had to do with his intangibles while not playing well. Give me a break, when fans can vote someone who doesn’t even start for their team you can’t use objective analysis when it comes to all the picks.

    Comment by Joe — June 26, 2010 @ 2:28 pm

  81. Yes but 35 is such a humorous number.

    Comment by Christian — June 26, 2010 @ 2:51 pm

  82. Those 5 walks came on a mound that had to be repaired twice while he was pitching, because his plant foot kept slipping. He hasn’t walked a single batter in any other start.

    Comment by Bryz — June 26, 2010 @ 3:00 pm

  83. Haha. Classic… it does get old hearing about how Cliff Lee is the second coming of Sandy Koufax or Jesus. I think he’s trying to get his team as many top prospects as possible for a guy not under contract, on the wrong side of 30, and who’s also very underpaid.

    Some team will give him a 6 year/118 million dollar contract(or more), and regret it the final 3 seasons.

    Comment by Kyle — June 26, 2010 @ 3:27 pm

  84. I think Dunn or Zimmerman is the more qualified all-star. They’ve both played the whole season, and aren’t just 4 games deep into their careers. But I also don’t think every team should be represented if they don’t even have one guy putting up decent numbers.

    And obviously, if a horrible team has 2 outstanding players but no help they should get as many all-stars that are deserving. Seattle is going to have Lee and Ichiro(though I think Ichiro is starting ahead of guys who are better and help their teams win.) Probably unfair, since he does get 200 hits ever season with little help.

    But if they put King Felix on there while they’re already well represented, that’d suck.

    Comment by Kyle — June 26, 2010 @ 3:35 pm

  85. Can I point out that Strasburg still hasn’t pitched against a playoff contender? He’s really, really good, but come on, he has starts against the Pirates, Royals, White Sox, and Indians.

    Comment by J Bravo — June 26, 2010 @ 4:34 pm

  86. You can point it out. He can also have an average or poor game against a playoff contender, and STILL have really dominant stats.

    How many playoff contending teams are there in each league? 6-7?

    So, how many players crush the subpar teams, and do average or worse against the really good ones on their way to a statistically good season?

    No evidence (not pitched against a playoff team) does not count as “evidence against”.

    Comment by CircleChange11 — June 26, 2010 @ 5:06 pm

  87. Soriano’ed

    Comment by Chet — June 26, 2010 @ 5:12 pm

  88. Agreed. Oswalt is a guarantee but Johnson isn’t? No chance.

    Comment by Lance W — June 26, 2010 @ 6:12 pm

  89. I’ve been saying basically since Strasburg’s debut that he’ll be the National League Final Vote winner. I could understand either way if he’s selected by Manuel or not, but I can’t imagine him not getting on that ballot (although I’m not sure how those players are nominated), and if he’s on there, there’s no way he’ll lose.

    As for the All-Star Game in general, I would like it better if the best players played the entire game. I’m not sure who could be trusted to decide who the best players are, but I think seeing the superstars get two at-bats and then watching the more fringe stars come in defeats the purpose. So does watching a slew of starters pitch an inning apiece, not that anyone wants their guy pitching the All-Star Game…

    Comment by Lance W — June 26, 2010 @ 6:14 pm

  90. Yet 4 starts is “evidence for”….Interesting.

    At what point do we start selecting can’t miss Triple A prospects who project well? Or do they need ~50-75 AB’s at the MLB level to be considered? If Strasburg were a hitter with this sample size, would we be having this discussion?

    Are we saying Strasburg should go because he has great stuff or great results? While it certainly would be entertaining, I think the issue is it means one more player is going to get overlooked.

    Comment by reality check — June 26, 2010 @ 6:25 pm

  91. Just to chime in. I’m a live and die Nats fan. I’ve watched every ML inning that Strasburg has pitched (over and over haha). I can’t really add anything to what the stats already show on this kid. But he must be watched to truly be appreciated. His wicked curve, 97-101mph fastball (2 kinds), and a changeup that looks like most pitchers; breaking ball are all amazing. He’s a K machine and will probably K more when he faces the slugging teams.
    BUT, Zimmerman and Dunn are more deserving for the ASG.

    Comment by cwj — June 26, 2010 @ 6:33 pm

  92. 4 history-making, record-breaking, starts by a pitcher who has a rare skill set … and rare in ths case means (probably), less than 20 pitchers ever in the history of the game.

    Let’s not just call them “4 starts”, and let’s not just pretend that Strasburg is just another “Van Poppel” (or other righty phenom that has a big fastball and nothing else).

    Strasburg has shown an electric fastball, one of the best curveballs, and an outstanding changeup … and he generally throws strikes, and gets hitters to chase when down in the count. In other words, he has great stuff and is a smart pitcher.

    I am usually the one that cautions everyone else about labelling smeone as the “next Michael Jordan”, but in terms of MLB, Strasburg is very good. The only way I could root against him or make an arguement against him is if I wanted to be contrarian just for the sake of it.

    But, in terms of the All-Star game, my personal oinion is that he should be IN, because his talent warrants it (and by talent I mean “he can get guys out”). It doesn’t matter to me that Silva and Garcia have better records or that some other “breakout” or “pretty good” pitchers might be left off. But, that Strasburg increases your chances of winning (IMO), and well, unfortunately the All-Star determines something kinda important.

    The downside of having him on the team is tat some other pitcher feels slighted. I can live with, both as a manager of the NL team, and as a fan. I’m a Cardials fan, and StL has some chance at the WS. I like the NL to have home-field advantage, and Strasburg could help.

    He’ll have ~7 starts by All-Star Break, if that means anything. Probably “7 quality starts”.

    Comment by CircleChange11 — June 26, 2010 @ 6:35 pm

  93. “Great stuff and great results”? Doesn’t that mean he’s a great pitcher?

    Comment by cwj — June 26, 2010 @ 6:36 pm

  94. Part of me is very interested and curious to see if he can “Fernando” or “Carl Hubbel” the AL lineup for a couple of innings.

    Comment by CircleChange11 — June 26, 2010 @ 6:40 pm

  95. I would hope, if he does make the roster, that he wouldn’t pitch more than an inning. He’s been interviewed an unfair amount of time here in Nats world, and I was pleased to see how humble he is. Too bad the Nats offence fell asleep, or Strasburg would be 4-0.
    Speaking of W-L records for pitchers, managers don’t share the same view as us stat nuts. Strasburg should be 4-0. His other numbers speak for themselves.

    Comment by cwj — June 26, 2010 @ 6:51 pm

  96. But again, Zimmerman should be in the ASG. I was actually thinking Clippard for the ASG this time yesterday, but he got nailed last night.
    As a Nat fan, here are who I think should be on the AS roster:
    1.) Zimm
    2.) Dunn
    3.) Clippard
    4.) Strasburg (the most dominant, but it would be weird putting a guy with 7 starts (by then) onto the roster

    Comment by cwj — June 26, 2010 @ 6:57 pm

  97. I’d just pitch him and make decisions based on how it goes.

    If he K’s the side, I’m not taking him out.

    I’m not concerned with media attention, pitcher’s feelings, etc … I’m pretty much talking about the NL trying to win the game.

    Comment by CircleChange11 — June 26, 2010 @ 7:12 pm

  98. Hopefully it goes without saying that I don’t think ALL of those 4 should go. That’s just how I would rank them.

    Comment by cwj — June 26, 2010 @ 7:13 pm

  99. CircleChange11 – Well said.
    I only brought up the attention Stras would get because he has handled it well so far.

    And just to throw it out there..Strasburg is a top 10 pitcher after a mere 4 starts.

    Comment by cwj — June 26, 2010 @ 7:23 pm

  100. hat’s what I am thinking.

    Take away the age of the player, the 1st half of the season and just look at “results” and “stuff”, do you want him on the team when you’re trying to win ONE game?


    We could also say, “Take all of the pitchers’ BEST FOUR GAMES, and see how he matches up” … you still want him on the team, even if you just use him at a point in the game where you HAVE TO have a K. He has a ‘skill’ that very few have.

    Comment by CircleChange11 — June 26, 2010 @ 8:53 pm

  101. Again true CircleChange.
    But Zimmerman should represent the Nats. He’s been in a bit of a slump lately, but is still top 2 (if not #1) 3rd basemen in NL.
    But yes indeed, oh man it would be great to see Strasburg pitch an inning in the ASG. His only weakness is when the other team simply tries to make contact. Usually they fail, but slap hitters will manage some singles against him.
    The Nationals fan in me wants to see both Zimm and Stras go to the game.

    Comment by cwj — June 26, 2010 @ 10:29 pm

  102. Strasburg has a 1.36 xFIP compared to Cain’s 4.73 xFIP. That is 3X higher. That is a significant difference.

    Comment by james56 — June 26, 2010 @ 10:34 pm

  103. And yet, you can’t realistically make a statistical case that Strasburg should make the all-star team this year.

    In a game where outs are going be at a premium, being able to get them without batter contact is going to be vital (as if it normally isn’t).

    14.75 K/9 (!) is a stat that could be used to make a case for Strasburg.

    What people are essentially saying is that he doesn’t have the “counting stats” (namely IP or GS) … which is something I did not think we emphasized here at FG. Just sayin’.

    He’s not lucky on BABIP; he hasn’t achieved a good W-L record due to run support. The knock against him is “he doesn’t have enough innings”. It wasn’t that he wasn’t ready at the start of the season. It was simply the team wanted to limit service time. He’s dominated at the stuff he can control.

    Like I said previously, whether the All-Star game is [1] a must win for the league, [2] an exhibition game, or [3] a popularity contest … there’s a good case for him to be included.

    The only way, there isn’t a strong case for him is if the all-star game is a reward for the players with the biggest counting stats in the first half. That’s what the discussion essentially comes down to. There’s no clear answer to what the ASG “is”, other than winning team’s league gets home field for the WS .. so a game that possibly means nothing, could mean everything.

    Mat Latos is probably going to get screwed with or without Strasburg on the team.

    After 4 starts, Strasburg is the “30th most valuable pither in the NL” (WAR). He’ll get two more starts (NYM & SDP) before the ASB. How much WAR can he accumulate through 6 starts? If he holds pace he will be at 1.8 WAR over 6 starts.

    Hey, look at that … the ASG falls on a day that would be Strasburg’s turn to pitch. Just sayin’.Heh Heh.

    Comment by CircleChange11 — June 26, 2010 @ 10:34 pm

  104. Strasburg’s stats (of all kinds) are simply amazing. I’m glad you pointed out the BABIP and run support.
    After the loss Stras took the other day (damned Nats offence) local broadcasters were actually arguing over whether he threw 2 “bad” pitches.

    Comment by cwj — June 26, 2010 @ 10:51 pm

  105. Like I have stated previously, I look at things fom “coach perspective” first.

    The NL needs to win the game in order to secure home field advantage. Knowing how important the 1st 2 games are in the world series, and knowing how important being at home during a game 7 might be …

    Who are the other pitchers you’d rather have on the mound?

    People seem to still be arguing from the perspctive that the ASG is a reward for the players with the best 1st half performance, when it should be about filling out the roster with the players that give you the best chance to win (both groups will many of the same names).

    People seem to be more concerned with how they feel about, or what the think merits the “reward”, rather than looking at actually winning the game.

    Comment by CircleChange11 — June 26, 2010 @ 11:48 pm

  106. From the view of absolutely having to win, Strasburg should be on the roster. You got me on that.
    Who’s a better choice (of all NL pitchers I assume)? Well, perhaps, Jimenez, Halladay and Josh Johnson. But even then I would be very tempted to place Strasburg first, if I was a manager and it’s a must win situation.
    You got me on this one as well.
    I simply can’t name more than 3 pitchers who I’d rather see pitch in the ASG more than Strasburg.

    Comment by cwj — June 27, 2010 @ 12:14 am

  107. How ’bout this …

    If you’re an AL batter in a situation where you have a chance to win or lose the game by what you do in a run scoring situation, what 10 NL pitchers do you NOT want to face? *grin*

    Like I said, many comments are from the perspective of thinking Strasburg hasn’t “earned” the spot because he does not have the counting stats (GS and IP), and/or they don’t like how they feel about it, or they feel other guys have earned it through the accumulation of counting stats and/or feel good stories.

    Strasburg is taking over the world. One can either fight it and lose, or accept it. Ha Ha Ha.

    I don’t like the All Star game deciding anything other than how much the fans enjoy it … but I have accepted that the game decides something important. The fans still want to see everyone play and expect the managers to get everyone in. The owners don’t want their main players used too much or risk an injury trying too hard, and the managers don’t want to do anything that offends the fans or owners (unless you’re Cito Gaston). Commish screwed the pooch on this one. The ASG used to be fun, no we just turn in for the derby.

    This year I must just tune in to see what “Captain Fantastic” does against the AL’s best.

    Comment by CircleChange11 — June 27, 2010 @ 12:35 am

  108. I simply can’t name more than 3 pitchers who I’d rather see pitch in the ASG more than Strasburg.

    [1] Halladay against the AL again would be interesting … well, kinda.
    [2] Halladay against Lee would be fun.
    [3] I wanna see Kershaw against Mauer (I’m a lefty).

    But, really who else? Jimenez? Sure. Lincecum? Always fun. Johnson? He’s really good, but I don’t care to watch just to see him. Gallardo? No thanks. Sanchez? Nah. Oswalt, Dempster, Billingsly, Paulino, Cain? Not really. Garcia? Sure, I’m a Cards fan … and I don’t want Carp or Wain anywhere near the field. I want them home, resting, preparing to match their strong 2nd half performances from last year.

    Looking at the TOP 20 WAR NL Pitchers … (and for fun supposing that Strasburg started ’10 in MLB and that he was ‘half as good’ in his 12 starts — that he did not make — as he has been in the 4 starts that he has made), and he:

    [1] Is 2nd in WAR behind only Halladay.
    [2] 7th in K’s (assuming he K’s 5 per start in his 12 fictional starts)
    [3] In the top 20 in ERA.

    Aw hell, forget it. It’s ridiculous to even assume he’d be “half as good” in the 12 starts he never made.

    There’s no good reason NOT to have him in the ASG. He earned by beig among the 5 most talented pitchers in the NL. It’s a competely diffrent scenario that trying to decide if Jason marquis in 2009 or Carlos Silva of 2010 “deserves” to be on the team. He’s not “like them”. Argements against simply translate as “he hasn’t paid his dues”.

    Comment by CircleChange11 — June 27, 2010 @ 12:58 am

  109. Great post, Circle.

    Comment by Vida Blue — June 27, 2010 @ 10:17 am

  110. I’m actually a believer now. Send the Kid to the game.
    Nats GM Rizzo has already said Strasburg would certainly be allowed to attend is he’s picked. (Can a team actually hold someone back???)

    Yeah his “fictional” starts would likely be better than 5K per game :)
    Fun to ponder though.

    Comment by cwj — June 27, 2010 @ 3:43 pm

  111. By the way, tomorrow’s Strasburg vs. Hudson and the Braves is a must see. The O’s (!) just swept the Nats, and he’ll be counted on to once again end a losing streak.
    Expect lots of Ks, but not necessarily a win. He could pitch a no-hitter and still lose, the way the Nats are playing. Good luck Stras. See ya at the ASG :)

    Comment by cwj — June 27, 2010 @ 4:39 pm

  112. I have a feeling that Oswalt will be named a pitcher for the NL. Every team has to have a representative, and, truthfully, there isn’t another Astros player who deserves a spot. The rule that every team has to have a representative makes the guessing game for the all star team difficult.

    Comment by CJ — June 27, 2010 @ 7:32 pm

  113. LOL

    Or more likely an effete AL snob.

    Comment by GrouchoM — June 27, 2010 @ 8:15 pm

  114. Once again, nobody is saying anything remotely close to what your feverish mind is telling you. What’s the color of the sky in your world? And just what the f*ck do any of the starting pitchers he’s started against have anything whatsoever to do with how HE HAS PITCHED???

    Quite simply, and there’s nothing you can say or do about it, Strasburg has been one of the best pitchers in the league since his callup. You also love to ignore stats that don’t back up your argument like the White Sox and Royals having the best K rates in the entire Major Leagues and yet Steven struck out 19 of the 53 batters he faced in those two games.

    I also love how you can’t wait to anoint Jaime Garcia an All-Star. He’s only got a whopping 15 starts in his entire Major League career. Only a brainstem like you would want him in the game. Way to be a hypocrite dude.

    Comment by GrouchoM — June 27, 2010 @ 8:24 pm

  115. Yup, the White Sox are completely out of the race at 2 GB. They should start dismantling the team.

    Comment by GrouchoM — June 27, 2010 @ 8:26 pm

  116. As a Cardinals fan, I’m hoping we catch the Nats when he is not scheduled to pitch.

    Comment by CircleChange11 — June 27, 2010 @ 10:20 pm

  117. On a slightly irrelevant note, I’d love to see Torres be 2010’s version of Ryan Ludwick and get a nod for the bench.

    Comment by Derek — June 27, 2010 @ 10:57 pm

  118. PJ Never said HoF. He will probably blow out his arm in the next couple years.

    Comment by oompaloopma — June 28, 2010 @ 10:42 am

  119. Yea, the Ripken homer was funny forgot about that moment.

    Comment by oompaloopma — June 28, 2010 @ 12:19 pm

  120. Every argument against Strasburg is based on the belief that the All Star Game *shouldn’t* be a popularity contest, or that it *shouldn’t* be just an exhibition.

    The problem is, the All-Star Game *is* a popularity contest, and it *is* essentially just an exhibition. And until they reform the thing to make it objective and a sabermetric dream-show, we just need to accept it and work from there.

    Based on what the All-Star Game *is* (a largely popularity-fueled exhibition), Strasburg should be there. He makes for better theater, he makes for better ratings, and to be honest, he makes for a more interesting game.

    It won’t be fair to whoever gets left out, but it’s not going to keep anyone out of the HoF, either.

    Comment by Rex Manning Day — June 28, 2010 @ 12:42 pm

  121. Who doesn’t like themselves a grizzled speed-knuckler?

    Comment by LeiterWagnerFasterStronger — June 28, 2010 @ 1:46 pm

  122. PSST! Pelfrey!

    Comment by LeiterWagnerFasterStronger — June 28, 2010 @ 1:52 pm

  123. “But he should make the team anyway.”

    No he shouldn’t. If he’s as good as we all think, he will make plenty of all-star games in the future. In the meantime, these spots should go to players who have earned them via their on-the-field performance rather than a combination of performance (6 or 7 games’ worth), hype, expectations, projections, etc.

    Comment by WY — June 28, 2010 @ 3:53 pm

  124. Thought exercise, if Strasburg K’s 15 a game for his next three starts, walks 1 per game, pitches 7 innings per start, gives up a total of 2 ER, and goes 2-0 with a no decision, how many people would say he deserved the all-star game who are against it now? He took on two teams so far that rarely strike out even if there record is bad, and I think that it is theoretically possible he pulls this off if he is on fire, which I’m sure most people here believe can happen over 3 starts. Then you’d have a guy with a K/9 over 15, with an xFIP ridiculously low, and actually his counting stats would be at least in the league of the others, the stats that everyone agrees will hold him back. He’d be in shooting range of Matt Cain’s probable numbers, if Matt Cain has three average starts that are equivalent to his average start on the season and the Giants offense doesn’t give him support in any (something we all know is very possible) then this scenario could happen. Cain currently has 6 wins and 70 K’s and inferior numbers to Strasburg in many categories. If he averages his same K rate on the year for his next three starts he has had all season then he will have 84 K’s to Strasburg’s 86 and 4 wins to Cain’s 6. Then who would you pick?

    Really, I don’t expect this to happen, but it is eminently possible, and I would love to see it happen, because it would be really nice to have people say about Strasburg that he hasn’t done enough, even if he has roughly equivalent COUNTING stats to a presumed all-star caliber pitcher who has been playing the whole season. So, the question is, if he is ahead of Cain in K’s at the break and behind him in wins by 2, with all the other traditional and advanced metrics in Strasburg’s favor, does his lack of starts still punish him?

    Comment by Justin Mosovsky — June 28, 2010 @ 4:43 pm

  125. You know that the winner of the ASG gets home-field advantage for the WS, right?

    It’s not completely an “exhibition”.

    Comment by CircleChange11 — June 28, 2010 @ 6:15 pm

  126. IF IF IF IF

    Why do supposed statisticians and saber-metricians concentrate so much on imaginary things?

    I’m watching the Braves and Nats game right now and Strasburg doesn’t look like an All Star.He looks like he is going to give up 15 hits before he gets 15 Ks. Which is why I keep saying over and over that we can’t anoint this guy a Hall of Famer based on What ifs? and Could have beens? of 5 starts.

    Comment by PJ — June 28, 2010 @ 7:55 pm

  127. First of all, knock it off with the strawmen. No one is talking about the HoF, that’s your creation, stop bringing it up. It’s childish.

    I’m not sure if you looked around or not, but prety much everyone from managers, GMs, players, fans, sabermaticians, etc are all over Strasburg.

    It’s not like he’s a fabrication. Let’s look at tonight …

    6.1 IP, 6 H, 3 ER, 7 K, 2 BB … 10 GB, 2 FB, 4 LD

    Now, consider that tonight is, by far, his WORST start.

    Did we really expect him to keep having 1-run, 4-hit, 12-K starts over and over? If so, that probably says more about us than it does him.

    I’m trying to figure out what your point is. Do you realize tha domination over weaker tams, combined with average sarts against the others results in sme really good season stats (not saying that Strasburg will follow that trend).

    You seem to be arguing against a Strasburg season of 18-2 1.55 with a 15 K/9 rate. I think you’ll win that bet, but don’t understand why you’re making it (no one else is).

    Comment by CircleChange11 — June 28, 2010 @ 10:03 pm

  128. Dickey lost badly tonight.

    Comment by DanaT — June 28, 2010 @ 10:53 pm

  129. Good prediction! Nats went down w/o scoring a run, with N. Morgan picked off first for the first out of the game !!!! SS pitched beautifully for six shutout innings, striking out 5 straight (hot hitting) Braves along the way.

    Comment by DanaT — June 28, 2010 @ 11:00 pm

  130. Actually, tonight was his BEST start. You probably meant that STATISTICALLY is was his worst start. Sadly tho, this site is all about crunching numbers, but missing the essence of the game, which like football (hard as it is to quantify right guards and left tackles) is really about winning and losing. My 92 year old father and I saw his first three starts in person, which meant driving five + hours to Cleveland, and sitting in front row seats.
    His first start, he gave up a two run homer (The horror ;). He learned from that, and next game just allowed a solo shot. third start, only run scored after an infield single, when the batter beat him to the bag. He has learned from that. Another manufactured single run in the fourth start, and he learned Gee, maybe I need to supply the offense.
    The Nats bats are frozen. So he shuts down the hottest team in baseball, with the best home record and a packed house to boot. six innings, nothing but zeros on the scoreboard (which is really the only stat that counts to true ballplayers.) The Nats can’t score the runner from third with one out, and he has to run out his grounder before taking the mound in the seventh. Is he tired? He’s thrown fewer that 70 pitches (he’s learned to keep his pitch count low, or he won’t be allowed to pitch eight innings.) But it is 98 degrees in Atlanta, and he just ran to first for the final out before taking the mound. His teammates have provided one measly run, total, in his last three starts! Forget what the stats say for the seventh inning. Desmond booted a little league simple double ball four hop grounder to short, or Strasburg might still be pitching a scoreless game in the twelth (exagerating for effect.) To sum up, brutally hot weather, good hitting opponents in their park, 6 goose eggs innings = his best start, and best of all, he learns and keeps getting better.

    Comment by DanaT — June 28, 2010 @ 11:30 pm

  131. I think when people are using these stats on such a small sample size to justify an allstar game, the #’s need to be absurd (to account for the small sample size). It’s not about expecting him to keep up the pace, it’s about comparing a small sample size to a larger sample size. At least that’s how I view it – I can’t speak for the person above.

    If he had been pitching the whole season, you could simply compare his #’s to his peers and determine who should go to the allstar game.. When you are using 4 or 5 starts (eventually 6 or 7) to compare against 12-14 starts (eventually 14-16) then he needs to be substantially better and then it becomes a matter of how large does the delta need to be to account for the rather large sample size difference.

    If I look at a 15K/9IP rate I think wow he is much more deserving than someone who’s in the 8-10K/9IP range (assuming other #’s being similar). However if that 15K/9IP is clearly not sustainable and over a small enough sample size, you may start to wonder how much potential variation is in that # (maybe a friendly ump like tonight’s game or a weak contact team or two). And then it might not be that comparable to someone who’s racked up their #’s over 100+innings against a large variety of teams. Without running the #’s 15 per 9IP is probably a real difference over say 9 per 9IP with the respective sample sizes, but if that dropped to 11-12 after the next 2 starts (say he racks up 11K over 14 innings in his next 2 starts) is it real or is it potential variation?

    Comment by joe — June 28, 2010 @ 11:39 pm

  132. I think when people are using these stats on such a small sample size to justify an allstar game,

    I think we should stop looking at the all-star game as “a reward for a strong first half” and start looking at it like “determines home field for the WS”, and then try to “win the game”.

    The fans keep talking as if it is “just fun and games” and the commish made it “decide something”.

    My point all along is that you fill out the roster with the league’s most talented players (the ones tat giveyou the best chance to win), and i that means the RA Dickeys, Carlos Silvas, and Jason Marquis of the world don’t “get what they’ve earned”, then so be it.

    The NL should try to win the game for a change.

    I know I have said this before, but we keep talking of the All-Star game as a “reward for a good first half”, when really it’s “the game that determines home field for the WS”.

    Comment by CircleChange11 — June 29, 2010 @ 1:35 pm

  133. Actually, tonight was his BEST start. You probably meant that STATISTICALLY is was his worst start.

    Yep. I used pure stats because that’s the context of the post I was responding to.

    I didn’t watch the game. I was with my boys at the locial diamonds.

    The botched grounders on DP’s drove me cazy when I pitched. All hell seems to break loose when DP’s are failed (especially if you don’t gt the lead runnerout).

    Comment by CircleChange11 — June 29, 2010 @ 1:46 pm

  134. Have they been the same person all this time? Do we have any pictures of Carson and Dave in the same room? Is every writer on this site actually Dave Cameron?

    Comment by Bill — June 29, 2010 @ 1:50 pm

  135. Good for you! Sadly, my kids grew up without baseball, save for a couple of visits to minor league games. I just couldn’t see driving to Baltimore, and giving another nickel to Peter Angelos. Angelos, remember, still owns the Washington Nationals television rights, and stands to profit a lot off of SS.
    What a pity!

    Comment by DanaT — June 29, 2010 @ 1:55 pm

  136. I didn’t say it was “completely” an exhibition. I said it was “essentially” an exhibition.

    The fact that it is largely fan-voted, and therefore contingent more on name-recognition and popularity than objective measurements of performance, makes it an exhibition. It might be an exhibition with some “meaning”, but it’s still essentially an exhibition.

    Comment by Rex Manning Day — June 29, 2010 @ 3:42 pm

  137. But it is a reward for the first half… you may not like it, but that’s what it is.

    – One player from each team has to make it (which goes against forming the best possible roster)
    – Managers pull the position players in the middle of the game to get reserves in regardless of impact
    – Starters are forced via fan vote so managers can’t look at platoon effects or start a better player
    – Pitchers go at most 2 innings

    You may want to change it, but if you really want to play for the win, putting Strasburg on the roster and pitching him for one inning (vs 1 inning from a different pitcher who’s may not be as good but is still pretty good) is probably far down the impact list of changes that should be made to play for the win.

    If the NL wants to play for the win, they should stop letting Phillies fan stuff the ballotbox and not let Heyward start in the OF because he’s got a lot of play from ESPN early on and is popular.

    Comment by joe — June 29, 2010 @ 5:14 pm

  138. Good point

    Comment by Stu — June 30, 2010 @ 8:22 am

  139. @Joe … Good points.

    That’s the rub … The game does decide something, yet the managers have a lineup and expected managing style (everyone gets in the game, no pitcher pitches very long, starters don’t play the whole game, etc) that is based on an exibition game.

    My preference would be for the commish to just leave the game alone and let it just be a fun exhibition game of stars.

    Comment by CircleChange11 — July 1, 2010 @ 1:37 am

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