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Saturday July 3, 2010 5:39 am

Stephen Strasburg to be an all star?




Posted by Adrien Griffin Categories: Athletes, MLB,

Stephen StrasburgA quick look through the blogosphere shows that just about every fan of baseball wants to see Washington Nationals starter Stephen Strasburg in this year’s All-Star Game. A quick flip through various baseball telecasts shows that just about every commentator doesn’t. They say that Strasburg hasn’t earned his spot, having been in the big leagues for under a month. The All-Star Game has meaning; it has history. Strasburg is just a pitcher who has done phenomenal things in a very short time.

The argument that it’s not just an exhibition game is pointless. If anybody truly believed that, fans wouldn’t be given the option to choose the starting lineups. Yes, the winning league is awarded home field advantage in the World Series, but nobody really believes that that fact makes the players try any harder, or the managers play their lineups any differently. In fact, wouldn’t it make more sense for Charlie Manuel to want Strasburg on his team just in case his Phillies make it back to the World Series?

No, Strasburg has not earned his spot in the All-Star Game. He’s mowing them down as far as strikeouts go, but he’s still only at 48 on the season. He’s 2-2 in five starts with an ERA of 2.27 and a WHIP of 1.01 and just seven walks. Those are fantastic numbers in a month of baseball, but that’s all it is. One month. If Strasburg had been around since April, there would be no question about his worthiness and all of this debate wouldn’t be happening.

The fans want him there. Fox TV wants him there. MLB should want him there. But doing so would create a new precedent for what an All-Star is. Decades ago an All-Star was determined not only by what was done in a season, but for years prior. Strasburg’s entry is the polar opposite of that, but it’s also indicative of where sports are headed. People want things fast. The “what have you done for us lately” philosophy has never been truer, and as against tradition as the decision may be, Stephen Strasburg needs to be in the 2010 All-Star Game, whether he’s worth it or not.

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