Monday, July 5, 2010

MLB: Jumping the Gun and Overloading the Chamber

This year, I'm realizing the MLB All-Star game is losing its respect and some of the gatekeepers are losing their minds. The fact that prodigy Stephen Strasburg was even brought up as a possible All-Star selection says it.

Now I love watching him pitch. I've seen nearly every start and watched him closely. Five starts does NOT, I repeat NOT, mean you deserve a spot in the Midsummer Classic. I don't care how highly touted he is, a 2-2 pitcher has no reason pitching among the best of the game.

I read respected baseball voices try their best to make an argument never made for any other mid-season call-up in history. (He'll make fans watch! He's got baseball fans captivated around the country! He's must-see TV! Have you seen him pitch? He's a strikeout machine! He'll help the NL win!)

That last reason is absolute bull. A kid is making grown men lose their minds (welcome to HS/college recruiting.)

All reasons why he shouldn't be there. Nevermind his record or the far impressive stats of pitchers who've pitched longer. Nevermind that the All-Star game will sell-out in Anaheim or that fans will watch the game and give it ratings regardless. Nevermind that this is a publicity stunt that cheapens his career or disrespects baseball.

(A store where prodigies are sold to the highest bidder before they're in full bloom)

Throw him in because he's a fan sensation. Gee, that'll make a joke of an All-Star Game much better - please the fans instead of respect their IQ of their game, something baseball prides itself on.

I hate when prodigies in sports are rushed to the altar (for that matter, I hate that for anything - let stuff breathe and build before overexposure.)

Strasburg pitches in an era where nearly everybody can see him at any given time. His first start was on MLB Network, he last pitched on Fox. Cameras and a national audience will find him - so most fans will see him throw his stuff at one point this season. Save the ASG for the best of the best or to pay tribute to the best. Besides he'll be there soon enough.

Which brings me to the worst part of the game - every team needs to have a representative. MLB stupidly thinks team's fans won't watch if their local player doesn't suit up. Again, an outdated concept in a 24/7 media age.

(Too many cooks spoil the broth and the MLB ASG, the cook upside down must be Bud Selig)

When deserving players are left out and we have to depend on chance (injuries) for rights to be wronged, then the system is screwed up. It's laughable when you watch fringe guys place All-Star on their resume and top players see their names on the annual All-Star snubs list (RE: Jered Weaver and Joey Votto)

Let's be real - too many guys are on the All-Star team. The game is watered down as far as who's allowed in it. But if the teams are expanded, can we least trust the players and managers to fill in where the fans get it wrong?

But Virgo, didn't you say people are gonna watch anyway? Who cares, right?

Yeah yeah. People will tune in next Tuesday and enjoy the game. I guess everything's being compromised over the past few years but I hate when sports does.

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