“I can’t imagine a guy having a much better year than he’s having,” Orioles skipper Buck Showalter told the media after Jason Hammel’s strong performance on Friday night.

The O’s starter threw 8 innings, surrendering just one unearned run on five hits and striking out 10.  As MASNSports.com’s Roch Kubatko points out, Hammel hasn’t allowed an earned run in his last 19 innings and has the six-lowest ERA in the league, 2.61.

“I think he should be a strong consideration [for the All-Star game],” Showalter said.  “I’m biased. I get to see him pitch every fifth day.”

While most of the attention in Baltimore has been on making Adam Jones a starter, we’ve overlooked just how dominant Hammel has been at the top of the Orioles rotation.  He’s became the staff’s number one guy, a pitch efficient righty whose off-speed pitches are fooling everyone.