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Joe Girardi defends picking CC Sabathia over Jered Weaver for AL All-Star team

July 8, 2010 | 12:51 pm

Is the American League East that much better than the other two divisions in the league? New York Yankees Manager Joe Girardi all but said so Thursday in defending his selection of his ace, CC Sabathia, over the Angels' ace, Jered Weaver, for the AL roster for next week's All-Star game at Angel Stadium.

"You look at CC's numbers, and they're as good as anyone's," Girardi said. "Our division is different than the others."

Sabathia is 11-3 with a 3.19 earned-run average, and he certainly is having a fine season. He ranks second in the league in victories, in part because the Yankees lead the majors in wins. But his other numbers are not as good, particularly next to Weaver's.

Weaver ranks seventh in the AL with a 2.97 ERA; Sabathia is 11th at 3.19. Weaver ranks first in strikeouts with 130, Sabathia eighth with 103. Weaver ranks fifth in WHIP (walks plus hits per inning pitched) at 1.05, Sabathia 10th at 1.15. Weaver ranks eighth in strikeout-to-walk ratio at 4.81, Sabathia 64th at 2.58. Weaver ranks seventh in opposing OPS (on-base-plus-slugging percentage) at .621, Sabathia 15th at .650.

Weaver has 17 starts, 14 quality starts. Sabathia has 18 quality starts, 13 quality starts. Sabathia has the edge in innings pitched (second with 124, with Weaver sixth at 115) and in complete games (two to none).

Girardi has said Weaver would be named to the All-Star team as a replacement.

"I had a good feeling Jered Weaver would be there," Girardi said. "There are a lot of guys that are well-deserving that will be left off."

Girardi specifically cited Jeff Niemann of the Tampa Bay Rays. For the most part, his numbers are better than Sabathia's too.

-- Bill Shaikin