Mets ace Jacob deGrom -- arguably the best pitcher in baseball this season -- has been selected to his second All-Star Game. But does he deserve to start it?
Here's the case for deGrom, whose closest competition is Max Scherzer of the Nationals...
- Leads the NL (and the rest of baseball) with a 1.79 ERA
- Leads the NL in WAR (5.4)
- Second-best WHIP (0.99) in the NL, trailing Max Scherzer (0.89)
- Second in the NL with 142 strikeouts, trailing Scherzer (177)
- Has allowed just seven home runs, while Scherzer has allowed 13
- Has allowed three runs or fewer in 15 consecutive starts
- Has completed at least 7.0 innings in eight of his last 10 starts
While deGrom trails Scherzer in strikeouts and WHIP, he leads him by a good margin in ERA (1.79 to 2.33), has been better at keeping the ball in the park, and has been on one of the best runs in recent memory. The nod here should go to deGrom. But there's an issue...
The game will be at Scherzer's home ballpark, meaning a natural (and understandable) push to have him start the game. The same thing happened in 2013, when Matt Harvey started the All-Star Game at Citi Field over Clayton Kershaw.
If deGrom dominates in his final start before the break (on July 11), while Scherzer struggles in his (on July 12), the ERA gap between them could be around a full run. At that point, the Scherzer home park pull could be out the window, opening the door for deGrom to get the start.