Blog Entry

Valverde, Wilson to close for All-Star teams

Posted on: July 11, 2011 1:14 pm
Edited on: July 12, 2011 12:30 pm

By C. Trent Rosecrans

PHOENIX -- Not only did the All-Star managers announce their starters on Monday, both Bruce Bochy and Ron Washington announced their closers for Tuesday's game -- if they get that opportunity.

It's no surprise Bochy is going with his Giants closer, Brian Wilson, while Washington said he'll go to the Tigers' Jose Valverde if he has a lead in the game's last inning.

Valverde is making his third All-Star appearance, which is why Washington chose him as his closer over first-timers Jordan Walden of the Angels, Chris Perez of the Indians and the Mariners' Brandon League. This of course is an issue because the Yankees' Mariano Rivera is inactive for Tuesday's game.

"I wanted to have a veteran that may be able to handle whatever pressures are there and that's why I  chose Valverde," Washington said. "I want to win bad, I want to make sure I had someone who can stand whatever heat is applied."

Valverde leads the American League with 24 saves and has a 2.70 ERA, striking out 39 batters in 40 innings. 

For Bochy, the decision was a bit easier -- Wilson's the guy he trusted to close out the World Series, so he's going to close out the All-Star Game if he's in position to close out a National League victory.

Wilson is in his third All-Star Game and gets the nod over the Padres' Heath Bell and the Braves' Craig Kimbrel.  Bochy did note that he'll have to talk Wilson on Tuesday because his right-hander has pitched four of the last five days, picking up saves on Thursday and Sunday, taking the loss on Friday.

"That was part of my reasoning for picking Kimbrel over [Braves starter Tommy] Hanson," Bochy said. "I wanted another reliever to help out late in the game."

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Since: Jun 16, 2011
Posted on: July 11, 2011 2:09 pm

Valverde, Wilson to close for All-Star teams

Hanrahan is the best?  Wow - you MUST be a Bucs fan lol!  He's having a great year, but let's see where he finishes before we call him the best.  We all know first-half studs.  I'm voting for Drew Storen & Craig Kimbrel.  Hanrahan won't be perfect all year.

Since: Dec 22, 2009
Posted on: July 11, 2011 2:00 pm

Valverde, Wilson to close for All-Star teams

PITTSBURGH'S Joel Hanrahan has a 100 PERCENT save record this year, 26 saves in 26 opportunities, with a 1.35 ERA.

Bryan Wilson has blown FOUR save opportunities; in 30 chances, he has only 26 saves, with a 3.14 ERA. 

PITTBURGH'S Hanrahan is by far the number 1 reliever in baseball this year, according to this blog's (CBSPORTS.COM) analysis, scoring appx 30% higher than Wilson.

Not only must NL manager Bruce Nochey be unaware of this discrepancy in competency, but so is this writer of this blog, C. Trent Rosecrans, for he DOES NOT even mention Joel Hanrahan as by and away the BEST reliever in the game today.  We can expect more from a professional journalist. 

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