Serial Joe Morganizer Ryne Sandberg offers his pick for the NL All-Star Final Man vote. He chooses Trevor Hoffman (0-4 3.68), offering this explanation:"[Hoffman] is second in the NL with 23 saves and he deserves to be in Detroit not only for his numbers this season but also for the career he has had."
Let's compare Trevor Hoffman and Roy Oswalt's "numbers this season," shall we?
Right now, Oswalt leads Hoffman in ERA, OBP, AVG, SLG, OPS, and BABIP. Not to mention a huge lead in VORP, but since that favors starters, we'll throw that out. Hoffman has the edge in K/BB and K/9, but Oswalt isn't really a strikeout pitcher.
Maybe Sandberg thinks the NL needs another closer. Okay, well, then let's take a look at Billy Wagner, who leads Hoffman in ERA, OBP, AVG, SLG, OPS, K/9, VORP, and BABIP. But I guess since Trevor Hoffman as a 3 save lead on Wagner, whose team is worse and therefore would not have as many save situations in which to pitch him, we should just pencil Hoffman into our scorecards now.
Some interesting facts about Trevor Hoffman's "numbers this season." When batters put the ball in play, they are hitting .301. In VORP, he ranks 227th among all pitchers, behind such luminaries as Mike Myers, Tanyon Sturtze, and Scott Sauerbeck.
Yes, Hoffman has had a great run, but come on. Those end-of-career arguments may work for Cal Ripken, but this is Trevor Hoffman. Unless we want to make the All-Star game a contest between a bunch of old guys who have had long careers. In which case, tune in to see Ruben Sierra, Roberto Alomar, and Terry Mulholland take on Julio Franco, Carlos Baerga, and a newly unretired Jeff Brantley.