Major League Snub for Garrett Richards

It’s hard to believe that there have been eight starting pitchers in the American League who have performed better than Garrett Richards this season.

The young Angels’ righty has taken the league by storm, recently throwing one even more overpowering performance after another. Yesterday, he went 7-1/3 strong innings against Houston, allowing a single run and striking out 11, bringing his season record to 10-2, with a 2.71 ERA and 1.07 WHIP. Yet, the powers that be in the American League – eight

pitchers are selected by a vote of players, coaches, and fans, and the rest of the staff is chosen by the managers and the Commissioner - consider eight other starting pitchers plus four relievers to be having better seasons.

It is hard to question the selections of Felix Hernandez, Scott Kazmir, Masahiro Tanaka, and even Jon Lester, but the other four starters selected, Yu Darvish, Mark Buehrle, David Price
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and Max Scherzer, under no stretch of the imagination have pitched as well, let alone better, than Richards. The stats:

 
Garrett
Richards
Yu
Darvish
Mark
Buehrle
David
Price
Max
Scherzer
Won-Lost10-28-410-68-710-3
ERA2.712.632.603.483.47
WHIP1.071.191.241.091.19
Innings 116.1109.1121.1139.2119.1
Strikeouts11913470159139
Walks4139312033

Price, Scherzer and Darvish each have a few more strikeouts, Darvish and Buehrle slightly lower ERAs, but overall, the battle of the stats gives an edge, and really a big one, to Richards. Darvish, Buehrle, and Price are all toiling for teams having very disappointing, and Scherzer, though having his second excellent season in a row, is still not the go to guy

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in Detroit, and likely never will be on a staff that includes Justin Verlander. Conversely, Richards, in his first full season as an every-fifth-day starter is showing off in pressure situations for a contender, and challenging Jered Weaver for the role of the Angels' staff ace.

But, all may not be lost. There are still three
possibilities for Richards to be added to the All-Star staff. First is the internet fan vote where one of five nominees – Richards, Dallas Keuchel, Corey Kluber, Rick Porcello, and Chris Sale, will be added to the squad, second, is the rule that requires than any pitcher who starts the Sunday before the game to be scratched and a replacement chosen, and third is the chance that one of the original starters becomes unavailable due to injury.

With the season he’s been having, Richards should not have to wait for one of these second chance events to occur, but that’s how the system works.

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