On Sunday, the Major League Baseball 2022 All-Star Game full rosters were revealed. Among those named were New York Mets closer Edwin Diaz. The Mets stopper is having another great season for New York. His among the league leaders with 18 saves, and has posted a 1.83 ERA to go with his 1.078 WHIP. But what's truly impressive are his strikeout numbers.
Diaz has amassed 68 strikeouts in just 34 1/3 innings, for a 18.8 K/9 ratio. Those are insane numbers. He has been known for being brash and outspoken and after learning he made the All-Star team, he didn't pull any punches.
Edwin Diaz, on what he's looking forward to the most: “I want to face the best hitters, I want to challenge them."
He wants Judge, Yordan Alvarez and Ohtani.
Showalter: "He ain't scared."
— Laura Albanese (@AlbaneseLaura) July 10, 2022
“I want to face the best hitters, I want to challenge them,” Diaz said. Mets manager Buck Showalter later chimed in saying “He ain't scared.”
Edwin Diaz clearly does not lack for confidence. It would be a sight to see if the Mets closer got a chance to go up against the likes of Aaron Judge, Shohei Ohtani and Yordan Alvarez. However, it's unlikely that will be the case. Generally, the starting pitchers named to the team cover the first few innings at the very least. Then you will see relief pitchers enter the game in the latter stages.
However, if Diaz did get a chance to square off against the American League starters, it would be fun. The last time the All-Star Game had a notable pitcher completely dominate the opposing team's best players was back in 1999. Red Sox ace Pedro Martinez struck out five of the six batters he faced, including Barry Larkin, Larry Walker, Sammy Sosa, Mark McGuire and Jeff Bagwell. To this day, it's considered one of the greatest performances in All-Star Game history.
It remains to be seen if the Mets pitcher will get a chance to duplicate that type of feat.