Starting pitcher Blake Snell has enjoyed a breakout season for the Tampa Bay Rays.
The lefty has compiled a 12-4 record with a sparkling 2.09 ERA and has punched out 132 batters over 116.0 innings pitched. His 12 wins ranked second in the American League while his 14 quality starts were tied for third as of Monday night.
Despite the impressive numbers, Snell was somehow not named an American League All-Star.
Justin Verlander, Luis Severino, Chris Sale, Corey Kluber, Gerrit Cole, Jose Berrios and Trevor Bauer were the starting pitchers who made it. While they all have turned in impressive numbers this season, it appears as though Snell was the most obvious snub, as his numbers could stack up (and eclipse) some of the guys above.
Immediately after the All-Star teams were announced, Snell’s teammate Chris Archer rushed to his defense. He definitely wasn't shy about his feelings, either.
On Monday, Archer posted a video to his social media channels, continuing the discussion on why his teammate deserves the individual honor. Like his original tweet, he was very passionate in his defense.
"Something like that can't happen," Archer said. "He leads the league in ERA. That means he's given up the fewest amount of runs per nine innings out of any starting pitcher in the league. ... Players, coaches, managers -- we have to do a better job with the selection process so we can put the best talent out on the field for the fans in the Midsummer Classic."
He shared a message for his fellow MLB players that had a vote, but chose to overlook Snell.
"If you didn't have him on your ballot, I hope that next year you take it a little bit more serious and put in the due diligence, because this is important,” he added.
Although there’s still a chance that Snell could be added to the team due to an injury or rest purposes for another starter, it won’t feel the same to him.
"I feel like being an alternate, it's not satisfying,'' Snell said, per ESPN. "I feel like I earned it, but being an alternate, it doesn't feel the same.’'
If Snell doesn’t end up earning a bid, there will likely be some backlash among the league’s players and fans that might cause the MLB to re-examine its All-Star selection process. Based on his numbers and position towards the top of most statistical leaderboards, it seems relatively obvious that he should be honored at the Midsummer Classic.
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