According to this All Star report from Sports Illustrated, the two starting pitchers in the All Star Game will be Cliff Lee and Brandon Webb. Now, don't misunderstand my intentions here: Lee and Webb are great pitchers who deserve their moment under the lights in Yankee Stadium. I endorsed their election to the team and will be glad to cheer for them next Tuesday night.
Still, are these really the two best pitchers in their respective leagues, or are they merely being rewarded for a super-hot start to the season? Let's take a look at their stats split at a completely meaningless date:
Lee, before May 12: 6-0, 0.67 ERA
Lee, since May 12: 5-1, 3.72 ERA
Webb, before May 1: 5-0. 1.80 ERA
Webb, since May 1: 6-4, 4.21 ERA
Perhaps Cliff Lee has not fallen off as much as I'd thought. He's 11-1 for a last place team, so that should count for something. But in the National League, maybe another one-loss pitchers should have earned himself a starting nod. San Francisco stud Tim Lincecum is 10-1 with a 2.49 ERA and leads the league in strikeouts with 122. He's the best pitcher in baseball and his team is just 26-43 on days he doesn't pitch. Lincecum may be young but he's earned more than just a roster spot; he should be starting this game.
And yes, I am a total Yankees homer who wants to see Mariano Rivera start the game. Sue me.