Sorry Baseball Fans, But Our Vote Counts Too Much
Yes. Ben Zobrist, Michael Young, and Curtis Granderson don't deserve All-Star roster spots as much as Nick Markakis, Brandon Inge, and Shin-Soo Choo do for the American League squad.
And Yadier Molina, David Wright, and Hunter Pence don't deserve it as much as Bengie Molina, Casey Blake, and Adam Dunn do for the National League.
Not to mention that Carlos Beltran and Raul Ibanez, both of whom are currently on the DL, and Josh Hamilton, just off the DL, are all named starters.
Justin Morneau, Aaron Hill, Carl Crawford, Torii Hunter, and Brad Hawpe are all "reserves" but are all having better years than those above them on the depth chart.
We can all talk about who was snubbed a roster spot for this year's All-Star Game, but are you actually surprised when someone loses a roster spot to a less-deserving player?
Ever since All-Star balloting hit the Internet and each email address was granted 25 votes, there have been a handful of players left out annually that should have been included.
It never used to matter.
It was an exhibition game where people paid a large price to see players not necessarily killing themselves, and sometimes even making excuses to miss it.
That was always the feel of the Mid-Summer Classic. Sign autographs, play anywhere from one to six innings, but don't get hurt—so, consequently, don't play too hard.
Then 2002 came along and shook up the laid-back feel.
Both the AL and NL squads ran out of position players in the 11th inning, and neither manager wanted to put a pitcher (who are always in abundance at the All-Star Game) in the outfield. So commissioner Bud Selig made the decision to call the game a tie.
Fans booed, and the media scrutinized the not-so-baseball-like feeling of a tie. Selig responded by increasing the stakes and, since 2003, whichever squad wins gets home field advantage in the World Series.
Major League Baseball handled home field advantage in the World Series backwards to begin with. Rather than granting it to whichever team had the better record, they alternated it between AL and NL every year.
Although odd that Major League Baseball was determining something as big as home field advantage in the World Series by the result of the All-Star Game, at least it required competition for home field advantage rather than earning it by default.
But there was still one large problem. The fans were, and still are, allowed to make up as many e-mail accounts as they can and vote with each one of them 25 times.
As fans, do we really have the right to decide the roster for the team that plays a deciding factor toward the outcome of the World Series?
And although we as fans help pay these athletes' salaries by purchasing tickets, and eating a $6 hot dog and drinking a $4 pop, should we really have the say in whether or not a player with an All-Star Game appearance incentive in his contract gets the extra thousands of dollars?
It's in Major League Baseball's hands, and a change is due.
If the best possible team is not on the field it should not be called the "All-Star Game." It's not fair to the players and even more unfair to the World Series teams.
While there are many players being snubbed year after year, history's also being snubbed by the best players not being able to determine home field advantage in the World Series.
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