As I sat on the couch watching the home run derby in a beautiful house on the beach during a much needed vacation, I thought to myself that Major League Baseball has it absolute right when it comes to the All-Star festivities. How many columns have you read, talking heads have you seen or radio talk show hosts have you heard in the previous few weeks discussing how to fix the Major League All-Star game? How about adding a skills competition, or making the rosters smaller, or taking away home field advantage rule? What about the snubs, or the guys that don’t deserve to be in Phoenix at all? The derby is too long and the All-Star game isn’t as fun as it used to be. There are so many opinions and so many “solutions.”
So here’s mine: don’t change a thing.
That’s right, I’m the absurd one because I’m of the belief that MLB has the mid-summer classic perfected.
Of the three major sports I watch, (baseball, hockey and football), MLB has my favorite All-Star game. Hockey’s skills competition is cool and their pick ’em style All-Star game is neat, but the game has no meaning and ends up being a high scoring snoozer. The Pro Bowl is a total joke that is so flawed that no one even knows where to begin discussing it’s faults. It’s a truly tireless effort. But for baseball, I always find myself anticipating mid-July for the All-Star game.
Having the game determine home field advantage in the World Series is unique and draws my interest. I find myself torn because I want to see Matt Wieters represent the Orioles well, but in all likelihood I will be rooting for an N.L. team come October. Sure the rosters are big, but if they were smaller wouldn’t they lose guys worthy of of making the team? I think so. And yeah, the home run derby is long, but that doesn’t stop me from watching it from start to finish every year. Everyone of the All-Star game’s “flaws” can be answered with a “yeah, but.”
We live in a world of over analyzation with 24 hour analysis in multiple formats. Sometimes we break things down too much and in my opinion that’s what has caused the uproar surrounding the All-Star game. The stadiums are always jammed packed and fans of the game are watching, so what’s the problem?
Baseball is America’s past time. One of my favorite quotes about this great game comes from a great movie. Imagine that. Terrence Mann expressed his love for the game with Ray Kinsella as he debated the point of building a baseball field in his Iowa corn field. “The one constant through all the years, Ray, has been baseball. America has rolled by like an army of steamrollers. It has been erased like a blackboard, rebuilt and erased again. But baseball has marked the time. This field, this game: it’s a part of our past, Ray. It reminds of us of all that once was good and it could be again,” James Earl Jones as Mann said. It’s a chilling quote from a fantastic movie that gets right to the heart of any fan and when I watch the All-Star game, even with all of it’s imperfections, I can’t help but think that Terrence Mann knew exactly what he was talking about.
@ Zach,,,,,,,,I agree with you , base ball is a great game , but not in Baltimore,,,,,,,,,,,the all star game is a nice tribute to the best in the game , but not in Baltimore,,,,,,,,,,,baseball may well still be America’s pass time , but not in Baltimore,,,,,,,,,,,,,you see my friend , there is no joy in Mudville , I mean Baltimore as the mighty Angelos has struck out…………Have a great Baltimore summer day………….
Some All-Star Trivia:
What do John Olerud and John Burkett have in common? 8 other All-Star player pairs share a similar common bond.
@ deron,,,,,I think they both wore the same number while playing for the Bosox,,,,,,,,,,and they are both named John LOL
Zach, Great quote from my all time favorite movie!
It is a shame that the Orioles have hit such a miserable skid as baseball is such a great game and I wish our fellow Baltimoreans embraced the game more.
While football is a great game too, it’s become more about the spectacle- the tail gating, the gambling, the pro wrestling like atmosphere- than it is about the game itself. It’s popular in our town because the Ravens have had some moderate success.
Baseball is the timeless game. I hope it returns to it’s proper glory her in Baltimore soon. Thanks for reminding me why I love the game so much.
@ MGW,,,,the Ravens have had more than moderate success , they are competitive most years and either make or come close to the playoffs 80% of the time,,,,,,,that is major success in the world of sports,,,,,,,,,not to mention, the Ravens make you feel like they want you to be their fan , The O’s could learn plenty from the Ravens but they have no interest in the fans or success,,,,,,,,,,,,,Baseball is dead in Baltimore but FOOTBALL is alive and well…………
Making the playoffs, or almost making the playoffs makes you moderately successful in my book. The Ravens have had a pretty solid core of players and should be expected to win a division title once in a while. The last few years, despite that solid group of players, they have been the 5th seed in a six team playoff format. They can’t beat Pittsburgh when the starting quarterback plays, they can’t beat Indy. All of this has them underachieving in my book. The fact that they have failed to win a division title, failed to beat the top teams despite the bevy of great players on the roster lead me to personally believe they’ve been moderately successful.
Are you happy with “making the playoffs” Spy considering they have future HOFers in Lewis, Reed, players like Ngata, Rice, 500 career catch receivers like Mason, Heap, Boldin, first day draft picks at nearly every offensive line position, dynamic players like Suggs?
Are you happy Spy that Stevie Biscuit left he keys to the Ferrari with a PR guy like Harbaugh who gets out out coached most every week?
This team has underachieved, I’m my opinion.
Get ready to “make” the playoffs again while Ray gets a year older, Reed too, Rice puts more miles on his smallish frame?
Lotta wasted years going by while Harbaugh learns to be an NFL coach.
Diehard Ravens fan here but I agree with MGW’s assessment of Harbaugh. The guy is a clown and outcoached almost every week…
Well, I still watch the game very year, but I think it’s way beyond broke, it borders on being irrelevant. I don’t think there’s any way to make it the spectacle it once was. The players just don’t care as much as they used. And I’m not sure why they should. The leagues have been homogenized into one entity. Players move back and forth between them. That was rare in the old days. There is no more real league pride anymore as far as I can tell.
It’s broken if becomes Yankees and Red Sox vs. the N.L.
@JUSTIN – It’s Yanks and RedSox against NL because the Yanks and RedSox have the best players be it thru buying/trading/home grown.
But also because the fans vote them in and I do admit that most times the fans vote on popularity…
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