My guess is that there are thousands of USA citizens convicted of foreign crimes (and held in prison in foreign countries), and hundreds with a misdemeanor nature similar to that of Brittney Griner's case. It is very hard to find references for this, so please correct me if I am wrong, especially if I am too high.
Does the USA government give preference to Griner? If so, why? It seems like there would need to be an objective standard and, if such a standard existed, there should be a much larger list of "prisoner exchange" candidates (maybe even a published list?).
One potential justification is that her 9 year sentence is simply too harsh by USA sentencing standards (of maybe 9 months at most), but aren't there many current cases like this too that are not being considered for a prisoner exchange? One good answer to my question could simply be that all similar cases are being equally considered for a prisoner swap, and that the media is simply not giving equal representation.