Posts Tagged ‘All Star Game’

New 2015 All Star Game caps are amazing

Behold, the greatest caps in All Star Game history.

Behold, the greatest caps in All Star Game history.

UPDATE II: Turns out the caps are a hoax. Oh well. Hopefully we get something cool for this year’s Midsummer Classic!

UPDATE: Well, good ole Paul Lukas from Uni-Watch has done some digging and apparently players are NOT wearing the pillbox hats during the ASG. Such a shame. Once I know what the pillbox hats are for, I’ll post an update.

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A month left until the season comes down to one game

Had the one-game playoff existed in 2010, the Braves may never have had the opportunity to hoist Bobby Cox above their shoulders in celebration.

Whether we like it or not, the two Wild Card teams in each league will face each other in a one-game playoff to determine who advances to the Division Series against the each league’s top division winner. It’s a silly notion, but according to Bud Selig in a recent interview, it’s here to stay. Selig mentioned in that same interview that he initially fought for a 3-game series between the Wild Card teams. This far superior idea was nixed by those serving on the playoff expansion committee and the one-game playoff was chosen.

Before we even explore just how unnecessary a Wild Card playoff is, we must first dissect the lunacy that is the one-game sudden death game. For as long as any of us can remember, baseball was about playing a series. Fans, managers, players, and anyone who loves the game will tell you that all you need to do is win two out of three in a series and you can go home happy. It’s how the game operates during the regular season and during the playoffs. It’s unique among American sports because both regular and post depend on your success in a series. The one-game playoff dispenses with that idea completely, essentially erasing the proud history of the “series” in baseball. Continue reading

Second half here we come!

Melky Cabrera (yes, the dude who once threw a ball from LF to CF instead of the cutoff man) is your ASG MVP. (photo credit: Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)

The All Star Game came and went last night. Former Yankees/Braves/Royals outcast Melky Cabrera and Giants teammates Matt Cain and Pablo Sandoval led the way for the National League who put up their biggest victory of all time last. The American League barely put up a whimper and found themselves on the losing side for the third consecutive year, this time to an embarrassing 8-0 final score. So with that, the National League champion will find themselves with home field advantage in the World Series for the third consecutive year. Home field advantage has proved fruitful for the NL who’s taken home the World Series title in both 2010 and 2011. It’s still ridiculous that the winner of an exhibition gets home field advantage for the Series, but there’s no need to complain because we’re onto the second half!  Continue reading

Chipper Jones is more than deserving of the final All Star spot

Let’s send Chipper Jones to one final All Star Game! (Photo credit: Atlanta Journal Constitution)

All Star Game selections happened today and while I don’t have a picture of it, Root for the Home Team actually got a shout out on TBS for a tweet we posted earlier in the day. Score one for us! However–and all gloating aside–this is not why I’m posting this as the weekend dwindles down to its final minutes. It would’ve been far too easy for National League manager Tony LaRussa to select future Hall of Famer Chipper Jones to the team. Rather than honoring one of the greatest, LaRussa is letting fans vote for Chipper (among others) for the final spot on the NL roster. One could consider it noble, but maybe LaRussa should look at what Chipper’s doing at 40 with bum knees and a bum just about everything else.

Chipper is by no means having an incredible final year for the Braves, but he’s still out there proving why he’s one of the best. He’s been injured and even when he’s healthy, Braves manager Fredi Gonzalez doesn’t tote Chipper out there everyday. However, Jones has found his swing (did he ever really lose it?), and has still managed to put up decent numbers putting up a .291/.372/.450 slash line in only 43 games (151 at bats). Jones has still cranked out 6 homers and 28 RBIs, and while he’s no longer the Braves regular 3 hole hitter, he’s still clutch. When you look at the numbers, his age, and injury riddled past, LaRussa shouldn’t leave this one up to the fans, but should be classy and make the move himself.

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The All Star game is an exhibition, let’s keep it that way

It’s been a decade Mr. Selig and baseball fans still don’t like your “All Star Game for home field in the World Series” idea.

Following tomorrow’s game on TBS, we’ll all gather around our televisions to watch the announcement of the 2012 All Star teams. It’s exciting, especially if you’re favorite player is bound for All Star glory in Kansas City this year. There will be a great lead up to the game (happening on July 10) and it will certainly draw the same amount of excitement and scrutiny as the game has in recent years. Most, if not all of you are aware that the All Star game now counts. Yes, an exhibition game whose starters are voted on by the fans counts for something big. The winning league gets home field advantage in the World Series.

While it certainly hasn’t always been the case, the National League has claimed the last two All Star Games and the National League champion claimed the World Series title (the Giants in 2010 and the Cardinals in 2011). In 2010 for example, the Braves’ Brian McCann came through with the game winning hit, propelling the National League to home field advantage in the Series. The NL Champion Giants (who had to beat McCann’s Braves in the NLDS) ended up beating the Texas Rangers in the World Series.

Now it’s hard to say that the home field advantage really matters. From 2003-2009, the American League won the All Star game, but the World Series was far less lopsided. Between those same years, the AL Champion claimed the World Series crown four times and the NL Champs took the Series three times. Not exactly strong evidence that the home field advantage card makes a difference, but the fact still remains that an exhibition game is being used to determine which league gets an extra World Series game, including the first two games.

With this year’s All Star Game a mere 10 days away, perhaps we should ask ourselves whether it’s fair for home field advantage in the World Series to be determined by the exploits of a player or players that may not even get close to October baseball. If a player from the Cubs or Twins gets a game winning hit, that could have a major effect on a team that actually has a legitimate shot at making the playoffs. That’s just wrong. Yes, MLB Commissioner Bud Selig had to do something after the debacle that was the 2002 All Star Game, but after all these years of having the game count for something still doesn’t make it right. After a decade, it’s time to shift the All Star Game back to what it really is, an exhibition. It’s a great way for fans and players to enjoy a brief break from the regular season. There shouldn’t be a strategy to winning an All Star Game except to have fun and give everyone you can a shot at playing. If you win, all you should get (besides a bonus) is bragging rights for the rest of the season, nothing more.

Let’s enjoy the All Star Game for what it is, and maybe we can hope that Mr. Selig (or his successor) will end this ridiculous idea that the All Star Game should have an impact on the playoffs. It shouldn’t. ‘Nuff said.