Case for Lance Lynn to start the All Star game
With the All Star game less than a month away, I think it is fair for us to take a look ahead and think of who will be starting the All Star Game. First I think we should take a look at some other contenders for NL starters. Matt Cain who is fresh off of his perfect game is having one of the best starts to his young career going 8-2 with a 2.18 ERA and 96 strikeouts in 95 innings. R.A. Dickey of the Mets is 10-1 with a 2.20 ERA and 90 strikeouts in 90 innings. Gio Gonzalez of the Nationals is 8-2 with a low 2.35 ERA, and 89 strikeouts in just over 72 innings. Stephen Strasburg of the Nationals is also having a fine year, Strasburg is 8-1 with a 2.45 ERA, and he is leading the league with his 100 strikeouts in just 77 innings. Finally, the last candidate is Brandon Beachy who is leading the league in ERA with 1.98 but his record of 5-4 is not so hot and his strikeout numbers are not that high only 63 this season. So that leads us to Lance Lynn, does he have what it takes to start the All Star game for the National League? Here are a few reasons why I think he does:
Lance Lynn is tied with R.A. Dickey for the MAJOR LEAGUE LEAD of 10 wins. To put this in perspective the last pitcher to win ten games at this point in the season was the late Darryl Kile back in 2000. Lynn also has only two losses and only one no decision. Lynn has strikeout stuff, he has 86 strikeouts which ranks him seventh in the pitching heavy National League. He also has a low ERA, only 2.43 on the season which ranks him ninth among NL pitchers. In his 13 starts this season he has 9 quality starts and if he would have gone one more inning pitched in three starts he would have 12 quality starts only allowing four runs in a game once this season.
I hate to be this guy, but former Cardinals manager Tony La Russa is going to return to the helm as the manager of the 2012 All Star Game which also means that he has some pull on the team. Not only does he pick the coaching staff, but he also gets to pick some players to be reserves as well as he gets to pick some pitchers. But the biggest responsibility is making the lineup and choosing the starter. Since TLR is still representing the Cardinals and he watched Lynn’s success out of the bullpen last season and the rotation of this season could allow TLR to choose his former pitcher without a lot of talk because of the success of Lynn this year.
One of the biggest things that fuels the MLB and especially the All Star game is the story behind the players. Think back to last year with Ryan Vogelsong who made the All Star game after playing in Japan for years before. Back to 2008 when Josh Hamilton went from a former number one prospect who ruined his career with drugs to an international superstar. Now in 2012 Lance Lynn who was just an average bullpen prospect transformed himself into a possible Ace after an injury to star pitcher Chris Carpenter. It is a great story for a great guy and I think many people will support the decision if Lance Lynn is chosen to start.
This one is both a good and a bad thing. There is at least three starts for Lance Lynn before the All Star break which means Lynn will have three more chances to improve his stats. Unfortunately this goes both ways because in those three starts if any of them are bad starts it could hurt his chances. But just imagine Lynn wins all three of the starts which will improve him to 13-2, and let us just say he only allows one or less runs in each which brings his ERA down to less than 2.40 and he gets to about 110 strikeouts, well that is just almost impossible to pass up. Also that means that all of the other compettiors have around three more starts left as well, which means that they too could either vastly improve or even fall back a bit.
Baseball is a strange game that is unpredictable so we will have to wait and see what the future holds for Lance Lynn and his hope of starting the All Star Game. But I have faith in the newly named Lynncinerator and I think he will end the first half of the season strong and ready to not only start in the All Star Game but continue to be a force all season and who knows maybe even win the Cy Young.