Baltimore Orioles: John Means Should Be An All-Star
Could the Baltimore Orioles have two players in this year’s All-Star game? They likely won’t, but starting pitcher John Means is deserving.
It is rare for the worst team in baseball to have multiple All-Stars. In each of the past three seasons, the worst team in the American League has had just one All-Star, the amount required by Major League Baseball. This year could be different as the league-worst Baltimore Orioles have not one, but two players who are deserving of a spot in the Mid-Summer Classic, held July 9th in Cleveland, Ohio.
We all know about Trey Mancini. He has been a stud all season for the Birds and is likely to be named to the American League squad when the rosters are announced on June 30. The player probably not known to many outside of Orioles’ circles who is deserving of an All-Star selection is starting pitcher John Means.
Yes, an Orioles pitcher deserves to be an All-Star in 2019.
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Before recently going on the Injured List with a minor shoulder strain, Means was 6-4 with a 2.67 ERA in 12 starts (16 total appearances). The 26-year-old leads the Baltimore Orioles with a 2.8 bWAR. That ranks 12th in the major leagues, just ahead of names like Mike Soroka and Jacob deGrom (each at 2.7 bWAR).
He has a solid 59/21 strikeout to walk ratio in 70.2 innings this season and his adjusted ERA+ of 171 is elite. That number would rank 8th in baseball, just behind Max Scherzer of the Washington Nationals, but Means falls just short of enough innings to qualify for league leaderboards.
His eight home runs allowed is a huge positive for a team setting records for home runs allowed. While he does not officially qualify, Means would rank higher than sure-fire all-stars Jose Berriós and Lucas Giolito with his 2.67 ERA, if he qualified. He currently has the exact same ERA as Justin Verlander.
Despite these numbers, it may be hard for Means to get a spot on the All-Star team due to his recent injury and falling largely under the radar, but hopefully those inside of baseball (players, managers, and coaches) who select the All-Star pitchers and reserves have noticed what Means has been doing and will reward him with an accolade he deserves.
Means is set to return from the IL this weekend. What do you, O’s fans? Should both John Mens and Trey Mancini receive All-Star nods? If the Orioles get just one nod, who would you pick? Let us know!