If Matt Cain was a character from the film “Mean Girls,” he would be Glenn Coco.
You know, the guy who’s face we never see, but who was cool enough to score four candy grams and spawn about two bagillion Internet memes praising the line:
“Four for you, Glenn Coco! You GO, Glenn Coco!”
Yes, that would be equivalent to Matt Cain. Because at the halfway point of a season where he already pitched his franchise’s first perfect game, the 27-year-old right-hander was given yet another honor: He has been selected as the starting pitcher for the National League in this year’s All-Star Game.
That’s a start for you, Matt Cain! You GO, Matt Cain!
Likewise, if the New York sports world was its own “Mean Girls” character, it would be Gretchen Wieners. But instead of having difficulty making the term “fetch” happen, the problem is their players aren’t getting the All-Star recognition that they had hoped for.
In New York, sports headlines weren’t praising Matt Cain for earning the starting role, no. They were focused on the fact that New York Met’s pitcher R.A. Dickey wasn’t the starter.
Coming on the heels of ESPN and other East Coast-biased sports hubs whining about three Giants getting to start in the All-Star Game, one would think there was some kind of high school popularity contest dictating who gets to play and start in the 83rd Midsummer Classic.
Sure, questions abound as to why NL skipper Tony La Russa chose Cain over Dickey. Dickey’s stats are indeed intimidating, with a 12-1 record, 2.40 ERA with consecutive one-hitters in the month of June.
All the same, Cain has been given the start and Dickey will be pitching clean-up.
Part of La Russa’s explanation was that Cain would start in part to compliment his starting catcher — and aide to Cain’s perfecto — Buster Posey:
“The one edge I thought made sense is we have Buster catching … and Matt was equally legitimate as far as getting the honor, and then we’re just going to play the game.”
“the most comfortable thing, having Buster back there. That’s special right there. . . I was texting (Posey) last night and was, like, ‘Serious, dude? We’re starting in the All-Star Game?’”
La Russa hinted to the press that back-up catcher Carlos Ruiz will warm up and catch Dickey. Sounds like Matt Cain was slotted in to pitch three innings.
Three for you, Matt Cain!! You GO, Matt Cain!!
American League manager Ron Washington — who managed opposite La Russa in the 2011 World Series — will be sending out 2011 MVP and Cy Young winner Justin Verlander, who has a 9-5 record with a 2.58 ERA and 128 strikeouts.
The American League starting line-up swirls around Texas Ranger Josh Hamilton, who despite his league-leading stats, only has one hit in three career at-bats versus Cain.