You read it here first — Bartolo Colon is a National League All-Star. On Friday, Terry Collins named him to the squad to replace Madison Bumgarner, who is scheduled to pitch on Sunday and thus is unavailable for the game.
“It means a lot, especially for someone my age,” Colon said through an interpreter, according to ESPN New York. “It surprised me a lot. There’s a lot of great ballplayers around the league, and I wasn’t expecting this.”
But it was not a surprise to your favorite Mets blogger (no, not him — me!). On June 19, I wrote it was conceivable that Collins would pick the widely loved pitcher:
First off, it is not unusual for pitchers in their final years to get an All-Star nod; Tom Glavine made the team twice as a Met, for example. Secondly, Colon is actually pitching very well — 6-3 with a 3.01 ERA and is among the leaders in fewest walks allowed. Those stats are almost good enough to make the team without his intangibles — an older player who is a fan favorite.
I speculated that Collins might put Colon on the fan ballot, and let them decide. That did not happen, but apparently Collins had this scheme all along. Good for him. Good for Colon. And most importantly, good for the fans, who will get to watch Colon on a big stage. perhaps for the final time.
Of course, what everybody really wants to see is Bartolo Colon hit. That is, everybody but Bartolo Colon himself.
“No, no. I pray to God it doesn’t happen,” he said.