Thursday, July 12, 2012

Guest Post- Maybe All Games Shouldn't Count

My name is Michael Rochonchou and I am currently a sophomore majoring in finance at Virginia Tech. I love sports and everything about them; however, I am not very good at them. So, I decided it would be best if I got involved with sports in a different way. I have had a passion for New York sports since I can remember.

To be honest, I couldn’t even tell you how the 2012 MLB All-Star Game even ended. Actually, I couldn’t tell you what happened the last 3 innings. The weird thing is, though, that I love the game of baseball and rarely miss my favorite team’s game. I am fed up with the All-Star Game and I feel it is the most poorly run all star event in all professional sports. In 2002, the MLB All-Star Game was held in Milwaukee and ended in an infamous tie. After a mild uproar, Bud Selig, Commissioner of the MLB, decided to have the All-Star Game dictate home field advantage of the World Series starting in 2003 (the team that represented the winning side would play the first game at home). Sounds like a decent idea, right? Wrong. But at least they are trying to make it better, right? Eh, well, still wrong. In my eyes trying to make the All-Star Game count is a half-ass attempt to make more money without putting much thought into it. 

If you wanted to have the game “count” for something as important as home field advantage, why let the fans vote? It is clearly a biased way to get the most popular players, yet not always the best players, on the team (Ex. Matt Kemp (who turned it down), who hasn’t played half the season, got voted in over Andrew McCutchen who had one of the best first halves in baseball). Fans, much like myself, will vote for their favorite players, not always the best. I understand that fan interaction is a crucial part of the game, but why not let them choose from a set list of reserves? Even after all that, it is hard to believe that the fans’ voting isn’t even the worse part about player selection in the game. At least one player from every team? Honestly? Is baseball that worried about the players’/organizations feelings? This is the best baseball league in the world, not 4th grade intramural baseball where every kid gets a trophy at the end of the game. It is clear they just want to expand their market and get more people, but don’t make the game count if that is your main goal. The BEST players at each position should be playing even if that means the whole Yankee lineup trots out on the field after the National Anthem. 

Manage the game like a real game if it counts for something as important as home field advantage. Matt Cain, starter for the NL All Star team, pitched 2 quick innings only giving up 1 hit. They then proceeded to take him out. But why? To make it fair to the other players? That’s odd… if it was based on fairness per say, why would the fans vote on the starting players? Matt Cain has pitched fantastic this year in the first half, including a perfect game. If it was a regular game, there wouldn’t be a doubt he would stay in the game. Not to mention some of the best players only got 1 or 2 at bats. Beltran giving way to the undeserving fan favorite Bryce Harper? No thank you. 

Basically, all I am saying is that if you want to make the game fun don’t make it count. How hard is it to say whichever team in the World Series has a better record gets home field advantage. But, if you want to make the game count changes have to be made not only by the commissioner but also the mangers of the game.  Every All-Star Game has flaws, and they are basically inevitable. Someone needs to knock on Bud Selig’s door and tell him to see the All-Star Game for what it is --fun.   


  1. It's really just a big media game and the funny part is the big media games in the NBA, NFL, and NHL all are better than the MLB All Star game.

    You make some quality points. The thing I find most interesting is the fact that RA Dickey didn't start. He has created a tremendous amount of media buzz this season. TV ratings for the ASG peaked between 10-10:15 when he was on the mound. Why wouldn't he be the starting pitcher. The MLB is so overly concerned with the ratings of the game, yet they didn't send a messenger down to LaRussa to drop the hint that Bud wants to see Dickey start. I don't get it. And if you think that things like that don't happen all the time, then shaddup.

    Great post Mike! Thanks for contributing. Hope all is well.

  2. You hit my main beef with the current ASG structure right on the money: DON'T LET THE FANS VOTE. I don't agree with the ASG deciding home-field in the WS, but I can understand why they make the change. However, the system with getting players on the roster and in the game needs to be changed as well. The MLB, the managers and the players send mixed messages about what the ASG is now about, and that is the main problem.

  3. Enjoyed the post. I agree that the all-star game should be fun. I think MLB has taken the fun out of the game to the point where fans don't want to watch anymore. This year's 8-0 didnt exactly help either...

  4. The ASG shouldn't have any WS implications...but i think that fans SHOULD vote. They want to see who they think are the best players in the game play together...that's like a main point of an All-star game, so why should the league pick the best players for them...why not let them show the league who they think are the best players... oh well! I don't think any leagues need to have any all-stars games anyway, just get rid of all the games && do all-star skills competitions, they're much better.