All-Star? Eh.

I realized last night that the Major League Baseball All-Star game is obsolete, and I wouldn’t mind if it were scrapped completely.

The All-Star game was invented in a time when the only way to see your favorite players was to see them in person, and the only way to see the rest of the league’s stars was to wait until they visited your hometown. And the only way to see the other’s league’s stars, if you lived in a city with one team, was to hope your team and that team met in the World Series.

This is clearly not the case anymore. If you want to see the best players, just turn on Baseball Tonight on a nightly basis. Want to see them play full games? Get an MLB package, and watch any game you want. Don’t want that? Wait for interleague play, you’ll get the opportunity to see them all.

So what’s the draw? Seeing them all in once place, to play a meaningless game (except for hime field in the WS…a completely unrelated incentive that makes no sense)? I’d rather not risk the injury (if you’re a Mets fan, and were watching Carlos Beltran come up lame after legging out the ground ball last, don’t tell me you didn’t gasp). I’d rather not add an extra inning to my closer’s arm, especially when he needs the rest. I’d rather not have my slugger taking 30-40 extra home run swings in the heat of summer, when batting practice would normally have been cancelled.

Sure, there should be an award to the best players at each position. So do it like the NBA at the end of the season: first-team, second-team and third-team All-MLB. The All-Star game just doesn’t matter.

(Which is not to say that I wasn’t pumped during the ninth inning. Comeback wins with two outs in the ninth are always exciting, even in a little league game. Especially if I was rooting for the AL. Except that I didn’t want Mariano coming in. Oh, well. Go AL!)

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7 responses to “All-Star? Eh.

  1. Ordinarily, I like keeping traditions so I’d disagree with you about this. But, essentially, the tradition is already dead. The HR derby is not only untraditional, but it’s tainted and harkens to the major stains on the game today. The game itself is untraditional, since teams do not try to win, unlike the way it used to be. (Exhibit A: Weakening the roster by taking reps from all teams, even if undeserved. Exhibit B: The attempt to get everyone into the game, even if that means removing the better players or playing people out of position.) The game is meaningless as a spar between rival leagues, since the National League and American League have been merged into Major League Baseball, complete with the elimination of league presidents. (Used to be that the league presidents would come down to the locker room and give a pep-talk to the players – and the players really wanted to prove that their league was superior.)

    The all-star game has become a dog-and-pony show, complete with skills competition. The tradition is dead. I wouldn’t mind if they cancelled the game.

  2. FrumWithQuestions

    I thought that the game last night was great. I remember going to sleepaway camp when I was little and always being away not being able to watch the game and getting upset because I missed it. I also thought the Home Run Contest was fun. I think that baseball should add skills competition to the All-Star break like the NHL and NBA do. It would be exciting to see who can throw the ball the fastest, who is the fasted runner, or have a base stealing contest. There are other creative things someone could think of besides the homerun derby.

  3. A skills competition would be awesome. You could have fastest runner (1st to home, must slide); most accurate arm, strongest arm.

    You could even have pitcher contests, like throwing out clay targets (like the wrist shot in hockey, that one that Ray Borque once went 5 for 5 on.).

    That would be so much fun to watch. You could even have a contact derby after the HR derby, having people lay bunts and slice balls into outfield targets on the fly.

    You would have to invite non-all stars, though.

    And I think the futures game should replace the actual all star game.

  4. FrumWithQuestions

    Maybe they should have the future All-Stars compete against the All-Stars and then we could see if they can really compete at the big league level. The rookie game in the NBA is always popular but then again the NBA doesn’t have minor leagues.

  5. first of all, I think the NHL accuracy contest is only four targets (the corners) and for some reason, i dont think of ray bourque’s 4/4 but Capt. Mark Messier’s same feat.

    As far as the all-star game is concerned, i would be totally fine seeing it go, i would love to see the home run derby go. Nontheless, I actually watched some of both and for the life of me I couldnt understand why they need a team of about six sportscasters to tell you if a ball was hit over the fence or not. It was crazy that the thing lasted well over two hours.

    Oh, and trevor hoffman, screw you wherever you are.

  6. I was going to reference Mess’s 4-for-4 (my bad with the 5’s), but was waiting for you or Moishe to chime in with it once I mentioned Ray’s.

    Nice job, JC. Did not disappoint. 🙂

  7. THIS WEEK’S SIGN OF THE APOCOLYPSE:

    Noam and The Artist Formerly Known As Anon in agreement!

    P.S. Great point about a skills competition. Pitchers hitting targets would be awesome! Perhaps something as well incorporating “outfield guns”. Have it replace the deathly boring HR contest.

    P.P.S. Bless this Mess. And don’t forget Mike Gartner’s Fastest Skater record!

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