All-Star Game Player Selection--New Rules, 'This, Bud's for YOU!'

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It’s long past time to revise the voting for the All-Star game by taking the Commissioner and the managers out of it, limiting the role of the fans, and allowing the active MLB players to decide which of their peers gets the honor of playing in the Midsummer Night’s Dream Game.

The term “fan” derives from the word “fanatic” and members of Red Sox Nation are the perfect example; they are also the prime example of what is so wrong with letting the fans select the rosters; they are wearing their digits to the bone, voting, over and over, for their favorite Red Sox players. [Granted, the "vote early and vote often" method was invented in Boston, but, com one... this is the All-Star game!]

In an ideal system, fans would only be able to vote once; instead Bud Light presides over a foolish frenzy of voting via internet, iPhones, Kindle Fires and other media toys. But, the real question is:

Are “fanatics” for teams likely to select the most deserving players for the All-Star game?

In 1957, fans of the Cincinnati Reds stuffed the ballot box and elected 7 Reds players to start in the All-Star Game: Johnny Temple (2B), Roy McMillan (SS), Don Hoak (3B), Ed Bailey (C), Frank Robinson (LF), Gus Bell (CF), and Wally Post (RF). The only non-Red elected to start for the National League was St. Louis Cardinals’ first baseman Stan Musial.

In 1999, Nomar Garciaparra gained over 14,000 votes due to an automated computer program.

To paraphrase an old saying: ‘Selecting the players for the honor of appearing in the All-Star Game is not a matter of life and death—it’s more IMPORTANT than that!’

It’s past time to let the professionals elect their peers to the All-Star rosters; give each player on the active team rosters in MLB a single vote. Let the players, who are “on the field” and in the game decide which of their peers deserves the honor.

To those who say the All-Star voting gets fans involved in the game and that the fans should have a say in who they want to see play in the Midway Classic, we say, let the players elect the basic rosters and then, take the fans’ results and add any players that were not chosen by MLB players.

So, the players fail to include a hot rookie, say Bryce Harper or Mike Trout or an old favorite, say Derek Jeter or Vlad Guerrero, if these guys top the fans’ list, they get to be added and part of the game.

Yes, there are many “fans,” who are able to see beyond their parochial perceptions and will take the time to carefully assess the merits of all the players in MLB and honorably vote ONCE. But, if all the “fans” are allowed unlimited votes, the “honest” voters become insignificant.

Bud Light’s current system:
• Fan voting (8 NL players/9 AL players)
• Player voting (16 players)
• Manager selection (9 NL players/8 AL players): The manager of each league’s All-Star team — in consultation with the other managers in his league and the Commissioner’s Office — will fill his team’s roster up to 33 players.

Allowing the managers of the two teams to select players lead to charges of favoritism and even suspicions that the selections are made to negatively impact the pitching rotations of teams for the week after the All-Star game.

Reds publicly question Tony La Russa over perceived All-Star snubs

“As is always the case when the initial All-Star rosters are announced, a countless list of snubs immediately follow, and before the day is through that overall list grows to be nearly as long as the rosters themselves. That’s certainly no different this year.” [http://bleacherreport.com/tb/d7TCK?utm_source=newsletter&utm_medium=newsletter&utm_campaign=mlb]

Picking All 30 Teams’ Worst All-Star Snub

“While everyone who was selected is certainly deserving, there are a number of players who are having outstanding seasons that have a legitimate gripe as to why they were not included.” [http://bleacherreport.com/articles/1243071-2012-mlb-all-star-snubs-picking-all-30-teams-worst-all-star-snub?utm_source=newsletter&utm_medium=newsletter&utm_campaign=mlb]

Using the results from the players’ ballots, the pitcher who gets the most votes [in each league] starts the game; he goes two innings and is replaced by the pitcher getting the next most votes; thus, the four pitchers who get the most votes go two innings each in vote total order. The manager gets to select the closer for the 9th inning. All those pitching changes for lefty/right matchups are ignored; by the way, statistics show they are not valid anyway.

On Monday, La Russa fired back at Baker.

“The comments Dusty made clearly disappoint me and are attacking my integrity.  The All-Star experience is too important to let anything stand in the way of a decision like that.”

“If Dusty had been more interested in Cueto being on the team, then he wouldn’t be pitching him on Sunday.  Cueto probably would be on the team if he wasn’t pitching Sunday.”

We leave the batting orders to the managers, but require that the top vote-getters at each position remain in the game for the first three innings, or for at least one AB, whichever comes first.

Also, let the current MLB players select the coaches for the teams from former MLB stars.

Also, do not require a member from each team to make the team; it is ridiculous to have a second rate player on the roster on that basis.  It’s embarrassing for the poor schnook who knows he’s only there because the name on his jersey doesn’t match the ones on the real All-Stars.

And, this Bud’s for YOU:

There is no connection between the league that wins the All-Star game and the team that gets the 4-3 home advantage in the World Series. Your moronic advertising phrase—“Now, it counts!”—is an insult to all the players who gave their best efforts to win bragging rights glory for their league since July 6, 1933, at Chicago’s Comiskey Park.

Bud, do you think that it didn’t “count,” to Babe Ruth, when he won the first All-Star game with a HR?

“We wanted to see the Babe,” said Bill Hallahan, the National League starter. “Sure, he was old and had a big waistline, but that didn’t make any difference. We were on the same field as Babe Ruth.”

With fellow All-Star, Charlie Gehringer on first in the bottom of the third, The Babe drove one into the right-field stands, the first homer in All-Star history. The crowd, according to one account, “roared in acclamation” and the first All-Star Game, won by the American League on the strength of Ruth’s homer, was a resounding success.
[http://www.baseball-almanac.com/asgbox/yr1933as.shtml]

Bud, do you think that it didn’t “count,” [or matter to the normally stoic, taciturn “Splendid Splinter”] when Ted Williams won the 1941 All-Star game with a walk-off HR?

Ask one of your office staff to play this for you, Bud.

In 2002, the All-Star Game MVP trophy was renamed The Ted Williams Most Valuable Player Award, in honor of former Boston Red Sox player Ted Williams, who had died earlier that year.

And, Bud, since the home field advantage for the World Series will NOT be decided by the All-Star game outcome, it will go the team with the best Winning Percentage; in the game of baseball, winning COUNTS.

Bud, the All-Star game has always “counted” and always will “count”–to the All-Star game, you don’t count!
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Tags: 1957 1999 2b 3b All-Star Game All-Star Selection All-Star Voting Babe Ruth Bill Hallahan Brandon Phillips Bud Light Bud Selig Bud Seling C CF Charlie Gehringer Comiskey Park Don Hoak Dusty Baker Ed Bailey Elected Fan Fanatic Ford Frick Frank Robinson Frickin Ford Gus Bell Johnny Cueto Johnny Temple LF MLB Commissioner National League Nomar Garciaparra Non-Red Red Sox Nation RF Roy McMillan SS St. Louis Cardinals Stan Musial Ted Williams The Ted Williams Most Valuable Player Award Tony La Russa Wally Post “Splendid Splinter”

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