Originally written on Losers Bracket  |  Last updated 7/3/12

Yup, I said!  Zack Greinke did not deserve to be an All-Star in the 2012!  I know, his numbers (entering Sunday) may say otherwise as he was 9-2 with a 2.82 ERA.  Most years, those digits put you in line with a Cy-Young award…this year is different.

  • Zack Greinke (MIL) – 9-3/2.82 ERA/1.167 WHIP/102 innings/102 SO/22 BB

Tony La Russa (yes, even typing that name bothers me) chose 8-starting pitchers for this year’s NL All-Star team…lets take a look at who they are:

  • Matt Cain (SF) – 9-3/2.53 ERA/0.950 WHIP/113.2 innings/114 SO/23 BB
  • R.A Dickey (NYM) – 12-1/2.15 ERA/0.885 WHIP/113 innings/116 SO/25 BB
  • Gio Gonzalez (WAS) – 11-3/3.01 ERA/1.118 WHIP/95.2 innings/112 SO/39 BB
  • Cole Hamels (PHI) – 10-4/3.08 ERA/1.099 WHIP/111 innings/111 SO/28 BB
  • Clayton Kershaw (LAD) – 6-4/2.65 ERA/1.049 WHIP/115.1 innings/112 SO/30 BB
  • Lance Lynn (STL) – 10-4/3.62 ERA/1.247 WHIP/97 innings/98 SO/34 BB
  • Wade Miley (ARI) – 9-4/2.87 ERA/1.064 WHIP/94 innings/66 SO/19 BB (lone DBack)
  • Stephan Strasburg (WAS) – 9-3/2.81 ERA/1.075 WHIP/93 Innings/122 SO/27 BB

Obviously, Matt Cain and R.A Dickey’s number speak for themselves…they are in, no questions asked.  I also have a hard time arguing against Clayton Kershaw, Stephan Strasburg, and Gio Gonzalez.  Sure, if you pick a part the number you can find some comparables.  However, the big one is the Brewers were 35-42 (again, entering Sunday) while the Dodgers (43-36) and Nationals (44-32) were both sitting in playoff positions.  The teams they play for give them the edge.   Wade Miley also gets a free pass because of the “every team gets one” rule, plus the D-Backs were above .500.

That leaves 2-guys you can argue against, Cole Hamels and Lance Lynn.  I will start with Hamels…his numbers go hand-in-hand with Greinke.  Zack gets the ERA nod but Hamels takes the WHIP category.  They both have similar records and strike-out/walks in terms of innings they pitched.  Also, both teams have been relatively disappointing in 2012.  Hamels is iffy, lets keep that in mind.  Lance Lynn is with no question the sore thumb of the group.  His 3.62 ERA and 1.247 WHIP are the highest among the group by far.  As for the Cardinals, they have been mediocre this year barely staying over the .500 line.  I think its easy to say the Lynn got the “I use to play for La Russa” invite to Kansas City.

So, take out Lynn and Greinke gets the nod, right?  Well…not so fast.

  • Johnny Cueto (CIN) – 9-4/2.26 ERA/1.142 WHIP/107.2 innings/79 SO/25 BB

Cueto is pitching for a first place team and his 2.26 ERA has been ridiculous.  It’s obvious that “beef” between La Russa and the Reds got in the way of proper decision making when you see Cueto not on the team.  I would take Cueto over Greinke, sorry Brewers fans!

So that leaves the Cole Hamels spot…should Greinke be in over him?  I have to say no…

  • Johan Santana (NYM) – 6-4/2.76 ERA/1.092 WHIP/98 innings/93 SO/33 BB

Yup, I am dropping the Santana bomb out of no where.  Record aside (which is a TERRIBLE barometer of pitchers I.E Ben Sheets 2004), Santana is in the similar conversation when it comes to comparing the body of work.  As I did before, I go to team record by default.  The Mets were in a Wild Card spot as of Sunday…I am sorry, but playoff teams should get more recognition than those that are out of it.

Again, Greinke’s numbers are good enough to be an All-Star; so are 10-other guys in the National League.  Take a number Zack, now serving #9 and you are sitting with #11…This is why I am “Sports Realist,” the ability to take the fan out of me and see things for how they really are.

Justin Hull is the host of the “Home Stretch” heard 2p-5p on 95.3 FM, WSCO Radio in Green Bay/Appleton Wisconsin.  Follow him on twitter (@jh1570) or facebook.

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