Mariners pitcher Felix Hernandez, center, and his American League All-Star teammates stretch in the outfield on Monday.
Want to Watch?
WHO: American League vs. National League.
WHAT: 2013 MLB All-Star Game.
WHEN: 7:30 p.m. today.
WHERE: New York.
NEW YORK — Matt Harvey will be in familiar surroundings but in a rare spot as the New York Mets hurler was named the National League’s starting pitcher against the American League’s Max Scherzer for today’s All-Star Game.
Both pitchers will be making their All-Star debuts with the spotlight directly on them as starters at Citi Field, home of the Mets, in a Midsummer Classic that gives the winning league home field advantage in the World Series.
Harvey has compiled a 7-2 record with a sterling 2.35 ERA for the offensively challenged Mets.
Scherzer has amassed a remarkable 13-1 mark with a 3.19 ERA for the Detroit Tigers, taking his first loss of the season against the Texas Rangers on Saturday.
“It’s a huge honor,” the 24-year-old Harvey said. “I appreciate it. It’s obviously here in New York. The fans have been great here all year. Hopefully I can make them proud.”
The right-hander has turned in a quality start in 15 of his 19 outings and did not drop a decision until June 13, when the Cardinals beat the Mets 2-1. He opened the year with wins in his first four outings, yielding three runs on 10 hits.
Harvey will become just the third pitcher to make his first All-Star game start at his home ballpark. The others were Carl Hubbell of the New York Giants in 1934 and Esteban Loaiza of the Chicago White Sox in 2003.
“What a tremendous year he’s had,” said Bruce Bochy, managing the NL team after steering the San Francisco Giants to the World Series crown last season. “It really wouldn’t have mattered what city we’re playing in, with the year he’s had.”
AL manager Jim Leyland of the American League champion Tigers said there was no suspense about his choice as starter.
“This year’s starting pitcher … is our own Max Scherzer of the Detroit Tigers, 13-1. Max Scherzer. I don’t think I need to explain anything more than that.”
The 28-year-old Scherzer was the first major league pitcher to begin a season 13-0 since Roger Clemens in 1986 for the Boston Red Sox.
“It means so much, especially for it being my first All-Star game,” Scherzer said. “This is what you dream for.”
Four players from the Big Apple will take center stage today. David Wright and Harvey represent the Mets, while Yankees closer Mariano Rivera of the AL will appear in his final All-Star Game and will be joined by teammate Robinson Cano.
The National League puts its three-game winning streak on the line after the American League won the previous seven Mid-Summer Classics since the 2002 edition ended in a 7-7 tie.
That verdict prompted commissioner Bud Selig to make the game “count” by awarding the winning league home-field advantage in the World Series, which coincidentally has been won by the NL for the past three seasons.
The AL, which won five straight prior to 2002, claimed four of the seven World Series during its post-tie winning streak.
Rivera, who will retire at the end of the season, will make his AL team-leading 13th All-Star Game appearance.
He is the all-time saves leader with 638 and leads the No. 2 active player — fellow All-Star Joe Nathan of Texas — by 310. St. Louis outfielder Carlos Beltran (eighth appearance) is the senior member of the NL squad.