Can the National League Stop the AL Winning Streak in MLB All-Star Game?
The 88th MLB All-Star Game takes place on Tuesday in Miami. The rules have changed and now the winning league won’t get home-field advantage in the World Series. Even so, the National League will still be trying to stop a four-year losing streak to the American League.
Oddsmakers have the National League as a-117-moneyline favorite. The total is now at 8.5.
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The American League will have 18 first-time All-Stars, led by Aaron Judge of the New York Yankees. Robinson Cano of the Seattle Mariners leads the AL with eight All-Star appearances. For the nod of starting pitcher, Cleveland manager Brad Mills will go with Chris Sale of the Boston Red Sox. Sale is 11-4 with a 2.75 ERA, leading the AL in innings and strikeouts.
Sale will have friends and family members at Marlins Park to watch since he is from Florida. He is the first American League pitcher to start two consecutive All-Star Games in 34 years.
If Boston’s Craig Kimbrel is on the mound in the last inning there is a good chance the American League will continue its recent dominance. The Former Braves All-Star Closer has 1.19 ERA and is 23-for-25 on save chances.
National League Has Stacked Pitching in MLB All-Star Game
The National League has 10 first-time All-Stars while the Washington Nationals’ Ryan Zimmerman, Daniel Murphy and Bryce Harper are all starters. Yadier Molina of the St. Louis Cardinals has eight All-Star appearances to lead all NL players. Joe Maddon of the Chicago Cubs would like to start Clayton Kershaw of the Los Angeles Dodgers, but Kershaw started on Sunday, so that’s a quick turnaround. Maddon could go with Washington’s Max Scherzer, who is 10-5 with a 2.10 ERA. Scherzer leads the NL in innings pitched, strikeouts and ERA.
Clayton Kershaw (14-2, 2.18 ERA) is unavailable since he pitched Sunday for the Dodgers. Chicago Cubs and NL manager Joe Maddon said on Monday that Scherzer would have gotten the nod anyway. Scherzer has been virtually money in the bank from the mound the past two seasons.
The Dodgers’ Closer, Kenley Jansen is as good as Kimbrell this season. If he is there at the end there is a strong shot that the National League finally win. Jansen has a 0.93 ERA, 21-for-21 on save chances.
The NL has won just three times and tied once with the AL since 1997.
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