Much of the team’s success in 2013 can be attributed to the emergence of starting pitcher Matt Moore. Known to start slow, he cruised to an 8-0 record that had everyone around baseball raving because of its significance — him becoming the youngest lefty since Babe Ruth to begin a season with eight wins and no losses.
As if that isn’t enough, Moore’s current 12-3 record is better than the Chicago White Sox‘ Chris Sale, Detroit Tigers‘ Justin Verlander and Cleveland Indians‘ Justin Masterson. Plus, his ERA of 3.42 ranks lower than both Verlander (3.54) and Masterson (3.78).
So why wasn’t he invited to participate in the midsummer classic?
I believe part of the reason could be that AL manager Jim Leyland knows pitchers from the American League Central division better than others because his Tigers face them more. Look at Masterson. His 10-7 record and 3.78 ERA are good, but not near that of Moore. Even Verlander, a former Cy Young Award winner, struggled at times this season, evidenced by his 9-5 record and 3.54 ERA.
While understandable, I don’t agree with this. Moore has been the lone constant on a surprisingly inconsistent pitching staff and truly deserves to be recognized as an All-Star. But, barring any late withdrawals, it looks like he’ll unfortunately have to wait another year.