Friday, July 12, 2019

Put that dog to sleep: Let's ditch the All Star Game

So says John Feinstein, and, dammitt!, I agree! 

In a piece this week - as we wait for real baseball to commence - Feinstein opines that the MLB All Star thing hasn't been worth a painted turd since 1970, and the honest thing to do would be to haul it out behind Monument Park, stuff it into an old Yoo-Hoo Chocolate Drink bottle and fling it into the Hudson. Says the Feinster:

Personally, I wouldn’t bat an eye if MLB just abandoned the All-Star game. Frankly, I’d be fine if all professional sports gave up All-Star games. Do we really need to watch a basketball game with more than 300 points scored because no one dares guard anyone? Or football without real blocking or tackling? Or hockey that isn’t even a full game because the NHL has tried about 100 different formats un-successfully?

Wait a minute: I do take issue over the Pro Bowl. Why, there's nothing quite like watching those giant, mutant warriors do lip-sync battles, as if it were the sporting version of World War III. Have you ever watched the line play? It's pro wrestling! No, it's Dancing With the Stars. They literally waltz with each other, gabbing, hugging so nobody falls down. Did I dream that, at one point, they had retired players pick teams, like on a sandlot? Who... I ask you... who could be so hard up for costume violence that they would watch this?

Actually, I haven't watched an all star game of any kind in maybe 30 years. (As a boy, I couldn't stay up to watch past the fourth.) Who in God's name would watch nine innings of such crapola? Once, for reasons I cannot explain, I tried to watch the home run derby. I lasted 10 minutes. Guys took beer league, gonad-popping swings, while Chris Berman screamed, trying to gin up blood pressure for moments about which nobody gave a flying fuckaroo. The only thing that matters is if someone gets hurt, and as far I'm concerned, there are still two Aaron Judges in history: Before the HR Derby... and after.   

On top of everything else, the All Star break means that we forfeit four perfectly good days of baseball - in July, no less! Yeah, I'm with the Fein Man: Kill the stupid game. I'd rather watch Nanny 911. 


JM said...

I was just saying to a friend the other day what a waste of time the All-Star Game is, and the Derby is an even bigger waste, if that's possible. At this point, it's only a marketing and money-making tool--although I suppose you could kind of say that about pro sports in general--and is a complete non-event. Who watches this crap? Kids? Morons? Bored shitkickers? No, wait, they only watch football; pro, college, high school, Pee Wee, it doesn't matter.

The only function it serves, which it doesn't serve for the participants, is giving teams several days' rest in the middle of a long, grinding season. That's fine by me. The break itself is like halftime in football, the other football (we call it maize...I mean, soccer), and other sports. So ditch the tom foolery and just have a 3- or 4-day break at midseason so banged-up guys can get a little sofa time.

The lords of baseball, otherwise known as money-grubbing billionaire monopolists, would never allow it, of course. And idiot commentators and writers would be out of work for a few days, which the media would never support, especially Fox and ESPN, who make dough on the current baloney.

I'm beginning to feel a lot like the gif of Grandpa Simpson, "Old Man Shakes His Fist at Cloud." As an old boss of mine once said as our company was sold out from under us, nothing gets in the way of the deal. It's always money first, and nothing second through one millionth.

Anonymous said...

I actually like it. The All Star Game not the derby. Here's why...

Even though I watch FAR too much baseball as in over 150 games a year I only watch the Yankees and the World Series. (It used to be at the same time but that's another story.)

With the exception of the rest of the AL East (Who I watch 19 times a year each) and the other AL Teams, I don't really get to see a lot of these other players. Or, truth be told, even know their names.

The All Star Game gives me the opportunity to check out (albeit in a limited way) the NL players that I don't think about.

For example. Yellich, Bellinger and Alonso have 31, 30, and 30 HRs at the break. That's pretty cool. I will now keep an eye on that to see if either of them will break the "real" home run record of 61.

That increases my fan interest right there.

Also, I always heard about Arenado's defense and he made a stop that was Robinsonian. Great play! I'm glad I saw what the fuss was about.

Josh Bell has 84 RBIs. Who knew? Plus the guy is freaking huge! Let's get him.

So stuff like that.

Doug K.

cabish47 said...

I really hate the All-Star Game. Since all games are on television, the mystique of being able to see the other league's stars is no more. So get rid of it.
I like the idea of the in-season vacation though. Instead of every team off for the same four days, how about staggering it like football. Say five different four day periods, Monday through Thursday, six teams off.
Every player, not just non-All Stars, gets time off. There are games on every day, so no wasteland like now.
It'll never happen.

HoraceClarke66 said...

I always loved the All-Star Game, since it was the first full baseball game I ever saw, back in 1967. And there have been some very entertaining ones since 1970. I remember that 1994 one the NL won in extra innings—8-7, I think. Then there was tie game, that was great...before Bud Selig let it be a tie.

And I always loved watching The Great One come in to close it out, with his incredible, unblemished All-Star Game record.

Unlike the other sports, it seemed like the baseball all-star game was the one in which there seemed to be little enough contact for it to succeed.

But reducing the pitchers to just an inning, in particular, has made it increasingly dull. And gimmicks such as Joe Buck talking to the players during the game doesn't cut it.

Rufus T. Firefly said...

Cabish capeche's.

HoraceClarke66 said...

What they might try doing—if they don't want to continue with the game—is have a "Baseball Vacation," in which stars go to promote the sport in many different cities and small towns. Holding Little League clinics, etc.

But it would be a shame to give up playing the game.

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