After being deprived of a MLB All-Star Game in 2020, the 2021 Midsummer Classic is creeping up on us.
The game is set for Tuesday, July 13, in Denver, Colorado.
Fan voting for position players is now open, but all selections for pitchers and reserves are done through a process involving ballots cast by MLB players and the Commissioner’s Office.
Ultimately, once the rosters are final, it’s up to the managers to choose the starting pitchers for the game.
Roberts’ decision regarding who should get the start seems relatively straightforward, but Cash will have to give his choice some serious thought.
So far, these two MLB pitchers seem to have the best shot at earning the start for their respective leagues this July.
American League: Lance Lynn
At this point in time, Lance Lynn deserves the nod for the AL.
That could certainly change between now and July 13—in fact, his teammate Carlos Rodon might challenge him for the honor—but Lynn has put together the most impressive first half out of any starter in the AL so far.
Lynn leads all qualified AL pitchers with a 1.23 ERA and a 332 ERA+.
He also has a 2.96 FIP and a 0.88 WHIP.
His emergence has been quite the storyline in recent years.
The righty finished in the top-six of the Cy Young race in both 2019 and 2020, and he appears to be on a similar trajectory this year.
Lance Lynn, Overpowering 96mph Fastball…and Dismissal. 😀 pic.twitter.com/KuDO2bJnN4
— Rob Friedman (@PitchingNinja) June 10, 2021
Lynn is expected to make his next start early next week against the Tampa Bay Rays.
National League: Jacob deGrom
There is no contest here.
New York Mets ace Jacob deGrom is having one of the most dominant pitching seasons in baseball history.
Through nine starts, deGrom has a 0.62 ERA, a 1.03 FIP, a 0.57 WHIP, and an unfathomable 623 ERA+.
A bad ERA+ is 75.
An average ERA+ is 100.
A good ERA+ is 125.
Jacob deGrom’s ERA+ is 626.
— Paul Hembekides (@PaulHembo) June 10, 2021
deGrom’s 623 ERA+ suggests that he has been 523 percent better than the average pitcher this season in the park-adjusted ERA category.
The soon-to-be-33-year-old also has 93 strikeouts in 58 innings.
It’s been an unforgettable run for the righty.
deGrom is set to make his next start Friday night against the San Diego Padres, and you can also count on him to get the start next month in the All-Star Game.
There were no real surprises in this article.
Lynn has absolutely earned his respect so far, and now he just has to sustain his success up until the All-Star Game.
deGrom, on the other hand, has likely already secured his spot as the NL starter.
It would take a monumental collapse for deGrom to derail the caliber of the season that he’s working on, and a monumental collapse doesn’t seem like the type of thing that this guy is capable of doing.
One thing to keep in mind is that a handful of pitchers each year are unable to participate in the All-Star Game because of the way their rotation spot lines up with the date of the event.
It would be a shame if something like that got in the way of the projected pitching matchup, because a Lynn versus deGrom face-off would be appointment television.