2013 MLB All-Star Game: The National League’s Biggest Roster Snubs

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Mark Melancon, Pittsburgh Pirates

Jun 26, 2013; Seattle, WA, USA; Pittsburgh Pirates pitcher Mark Melancon (35) celebrates the final out against the Seattle Mariners with first baseman Gaby Sanchez (18) at Safeco Field. Pittsburgh defeated Seattle, 4-2. Mandatory Credit: Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports

The Pirates have had quite a late-game closing duo in 2013. Jason Grilli, who was selected to the game, leads all NL relievers with a 1.7 WAR. His setup man in Mark Melancon is second with a 1.5 WAR.

One got selected and one didn’t. I think you know who. In case you don’t, it was indeed Melancon.

Melancon has just two saves, and that’s the presumed indicator of a good closer- I, for one, don’t believe in that theory. Grilli has 28, Aroldis Chapman has 20 and Craig Kimbrel has 23. The latter three represent the relief corps of the NL squad–not one set-up or middle relief pitcher made the team.

It’s tough not to make a case for Melancon, though. He has a 0.83 ERA (leads all qualified relievers, a 1.62 FIP (second to Grilli) and a 9.35 K/9 rate. There’s the WAR thing too.

With those numbers, the fact that Melancon isn’t a closer spurned him. This trend doesn’t just reside in the NL, as the AL has just one non-closer–Brett Cecil.

If Melancon didn’t get snubbed for not being a closer, well, I don’t know then.

Quick note: Bruce Bochy (NL’s manager) could pick Melancon as a replacement for the three pitchers pitching next Sunday.