Mark Melancon has been one of the NL's best relief pitchers in 2013. (Photo by: David Hague)
Pirates reliever Mark Melancon was named to the 2013 MLB All-Star Game as an injury replacement, chosen by National League manager Bruce Bochy.
"I'm very humbled and excited to go," Melancon said. "This is just a really cool moment. It takes your teammates to get to this game."
Melancon owns an NL-reliever-best 0.81 ERA during his first season in Pittsburgh. Jason Grilli's setup man is second in the league to the Pirates closer with a 1.62 reliever FIP. The 28-year-old was not originally selected to the NL team but found out Saturday he would be traveling to New York to participate in his first All-Star Game.
"These last 24 hours have been cruising by fast," Melancon said.
Melancon had to make plans for 14 friends and family members to get to New York, mostly from Colorado and Nebraska.
"If we could've had a West Coast All-Star Game, it would have been better," he joked.
James covers the Pirates beat for Pirates Prospects. He is a Broadcast Journalism student at USC and has written for such outlets as NBCOlympics.com, Pittsburgh Magazine and the official websites of the Los Angeles Clippers and Pittsburgh Penguins. James previously covered the Pirates for Pittsburgh Sports Report. He also broadcasts play-by-play for the USC Trojans baseball team and was awarded the 2013 Chick Hearn Memorial Scholarship and Allan Malamud Scholarship. James dispenses puns at his Twitter account (@JamesSantelli) where he promises to write in first-person.