Strasburg agrees he wasn’t deserving of making All-Star Game roster

Published 2:07 am Wednesday, July 7, 2010

WASHINGTON — Stephen Strasburg says he’s not feeling snubbed.

The Washington Nationals rookie pitcher said Tuesday he understands why he was left off the All-Star team and that he isn’t ready for the midsummer classic yet.

“You look at the guys who are going to the All-Star Game and the years that they’ve had — and they’ve done that since opening day,” Strasburg said in his first comments since the All-Star selections were announced Sunday. “I haven’t been here since opening day. They deserve it. Hopefully, someday I’ll deserve it, too.”

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Strasburg said he didn’t expect to make the NL squad and that it’s far more important for him to help build the Nationals into a contender.

“I never felt like it was really going to happen, so I didn’t put that much thought into it,” he said. “Right now, you know, I’d rather take this team to a World Series rather than making an All-Star team.”

The 21-year-old Strasburg, the first overall pick in last June’s amateur draft who signed a record $15.1 million contract, is 2-2 with a 2.45 ERA in six starts. He has struck out 53 and walked eight in 36 2-3 innings.

Philadelphia Phillies manager Charlie Manuel, who will skipper the NL stars in next Tuesday’s game in Anaheim, Calif., would have had to pick Strasburg for the team.

But such a small body of work made it tough for Manuel to make that choice.

“Obviously, only having six starts over here, it really didn’t matter what I was going to do,” Strasburg said. “I really didn’t feel like I was qualified to make the team, No. 1, based on how much experience I have. I’m sure I’ll have opportunities somewhere down the road.”