I am not going to go through and spout off opinions about every single player included on/snubbed from the All-Star Roster this year. I have lots of other things I have to do with my time, like read this book, or watch this documentary. There are just a few major issues I would like to express my opinion on in regards to the Midsummer Classic this year.
Ugh, Derek Jeter. I am well aware that my knowledge of baseball history has some significant gaps in it. I’ve seen the first four episodes of Ken Burns’ Baseball, and I remember Mark McGwire’s Got Milk? ads from the 90s.
Besides that, my knowledge of baseball’s major figures and events starts right around September 2008. So Jeter doesn’t mean that much to me. I’ve seen him in his decline, almost exclusively. I understand that All-Star voting is a popularity contest, and that people vote for players they know. I also understand that no one is better known, in a positive light, in baseball today than Derek Jeter. I stil don’t think he should have made the starting lineup. Put him on the bench, even though his playing doesn’t deserve it, as a fond farewell to one of the greats. Give Asdrubal Cabrera the chance to parallel what A-Rod did in 2001 with Cal Ripken Jr. I’m just sayin’: he’s not that good anymore, guys. I mean, Jeter makes it and Ichiro doesnt? Hmph.
Here is a dude I am glad made the starting lineup! Jose is the most talented, most enthusiastic and exciting player in the game today. And I might even think so if he wasn’t a New York Met. His numbers speak to his talent, and his ability to come back from injury. We were all so worried about him coming into the season. I’ll admit, I suggested, probably more than once, that the Mets try to get rid of him before he proved himself a flop. I was wrong (I was also wrong about Carlos Beltran, I suggested they do the same with him).
But what makes Jose so immensely deserving, even over Tulo, who is very good, is the shear JOY with which he plays the game. I love nothing more than to see Reyes slide into third, and pop up, immediately ready to clap and cheer, or to argue with the ump, big goofy smile on his face either way.
The Pittsburgh Pirates are FOUR games over .500, the latest into a season they’ve had a winning record since, like, 1665, or something. They are also only 1.5 games back behind the St. Louis Cardinals, who, even without Mr. Pujols, are a very very good team. And Joel Hanrahan is the only Pirate in the All-Star game. I know he’s not the only guy who’s winning these games for them. Hanrahan is an excellent closer, saving 25 games already this year, but there are a few other guys who have made things happen for the Bucs.
Guys like, say, oh, Andrew McCutchen? Who not only is not on the All-Star Roster, is not even one of the final vote-in options? What the hell? I don’t violently disagree with any of the NL outfield selections, but surely there is room out there for this guy.
Kay, that’s about all for now. Nothing earth-shattering, but there you go.