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All-Star Thoughts
Posted by Dalton at 7/5/2006 1:16:00 PM
View more posts by this author

 

First off, itís tough to get the rosters perfectly right, as the system is obviously fallible. I do like the fans having the ability to choose, but this certainly leaves room for error - as does the absurd rule of every team having a representative (see: Mark Redman). Another questionable rule is the winner getting homefield advantage come World Series time. I understand this one; after all, the fan should come first, and this no doubt makes the game itself infinitely more watchable. Problem is, of course, is that itís unfair. It should come down to overall season record, not Mark Redman. Actually, thatís a surprising benefit of the rule, it prevents the likes of Redman, et al., from even playing in the game, so the better players are on the field more.

National League - If you are counting at home, the Oakland Aís are sending one player, as are the National League champion Houston Astros; the Pittsburgh Pirates are sending two. Still, both deserve it. Freddy Sanchezís .362/.395/.527 line is one of the most under the radar and productive of the year. How the mighty have fallen; Barry Bonds doesnít even make the candidate for the final roster spot list? Itís clear heís a shell of his former self, but the guy has a .478 OBP and .970 OPS. Bobby Abreu, comparatively speaking, has a .915 OPS and three fewer homers than Bonds in 98 more at-bats. Of the final roster spot candidates, Nomar Garciaparra and his league-leading average looks like the sure choice there.

American League - Ozzie Guillen is one loyal guy, as six White Sox will be headed to Pittsburgh. Pudge Rodriguez over Joe Mauer? Not only should Pudge not be starting, but Ramon Hernandez should be in over him as a reserve as well. Pudge sports a .771 OPS with seven homers; Hernandez has a superior .835 OPS, 15 homers and thrown out 51 percent of opposing basestealers. Joe Mauer, meanwhile, is hitting a decent .391 on the year. But enough about catchers, as the true outrage is the exclusion of Travis Hafner. After he was passed over for Shea Hillenbrand last year, you would think there would be an effort to make up for it. Hafner leads the entire league in OPS. This would leave one to believe heís the obvious pick as the final vote fill-in; too bad Francisco Liriano is also on that list. The Twins deserve at least partial blame for taking too long to insert him into the rotation, but a guy whoís 9-1 with a 1.99 ERA, 0.97 WHIP and 94 strikeouts in just over 80 innings has to be on the team.

Bottom line, the American League team is just too stacked. This looks like a mismatch, yet again. The AL will win and complete an undefeated decade in the Midsummer Classic.


Comments....

Travis Hafner - 1.100+ OPS. Leads the league in slugging and onbase average as of 7/6/06 and he has to hope the fans make him the last player chosen? Yes, he is a DH and there is an obvious bias, but his bat off the bench in the late innings outweighs any position concerns.
Posted by davelibn at 7/6/2006 5:24:00 PM
 
So naturally enough Pierzynski outpolls both Hafner and Liriano...
Posted by Erickson at 7/6/2006 5:59:00 PM
 
Liriano is the best pitcher in baseball this year bar none.
Posted by cliss at 7/6/2006 6:13:00 PM
 
The MLB fan balloting is such a joke. I got a junk piece of email every day from the Tigers reminding me that "Justin needs your help!" So I, of course, went online and voted for Liriano twice (not that I even care, but he should be there).

Jacobs Field had online voting areas set up to help Hafner. I guess the Tribe Fans couldn't point and click fast enough.

Posted by spianow at 7/6/2006 9:09:00 PM
 
The MLB fan balloting is such a joke. I got a junk piece of email every day from the Tigers reminding me that "Justin needs your help!" So I, of course, went online and voted for Liriano twice (not that I even care, but he should be there). And oh yes, Jacobs Field had online voting areas set up to help Hafner. I guess the Tribe Fans couldn't point and click fast enough.
Posted by spianow at 7/6/2006 9:10:00 PM
 
The MLB fan balloting is such a joke. I got a junk piece of email every day from the Tigers reminding me that "Justin needs your help!" So I, of course, went online and voted for Liriano twice (not that I even care, but he should be there). Jacobs Field had online voting areas set up to help Hafner. I guess the Tribe Fans couldn't point and click fast enough.

Posted by spianow at 7/6/2006 9:11:00 PM
 
Hey "D" your on the money! I feel the same way..point well taken, homefield advantage, IS wrong..the fire in the fans always adds to the WIN!! And yes it sounds better, all season record BUT it wouldn't be a sport, without the FAN!
Lesa
Posted by Dalton Del Don at 7/7/2006 10:37:00 PM
 
Liriano should be an All Star, blame Ron Gardenhire. He blows more games and mismanages his team more than any manager in baseball. He blew the Yankees series a few years ago in the playoffs and continues that theme every day the Twins play.
Posted by schwang2u at 7/9/2006 10:39:00 PM
 
As for baseball and it's horrible standards, the DH, steroids, ties in an All Star game, an All Star game deciding home field in the World Series, it's amazing they still have fans. Attendance is up as the standards have fallen. Maybe we are the ones to blame.
Posted by schwang2u at 7/9/2006 10:45:00 PM
 

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