Sunday, July 3, 2011

Joel Hanrahan is Pirates All-Star Representative

Joel Hanrahan makes his first all-star game appearance after a stellar first half of the 2011 season. Hanrahan is in a five way tie in the majors with 24 saves and is the only closer that hasn’t blown a save yet this season.

In 38.1 innings of work Hanrahan has only given up 29 hits, seven runs eight walks and struck out 33 to support a miniscule 1.44 ERA. Hanrahan set the Pirates record for saves in a half season already and now has more saves this season than he does in his entire career (20). One key to Hanrahan’s success is that he has cut his walks almost in half from a season ago (3.36 BB/9 in 2010, 1.88 BB/9 in 2011) and slashed his HR/FB from 9.2% to 3.8% while stranding 84.3% of the runners on base.

Overall Hanrahan has been the best closer in baseball and there really isn’t anyone close. When he comes into the game is pretty much game over and most other teams know it. This season Hanrahan has used more fast balls and less sliders and throwing a ton of strikes and gets outs and is more than deserving of the All-Star Game.

Andrew McCutchen not being even a choice for the final vote shows how big of a joke the All-Star voting process is.

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