MLB All-Star Game 2011: Five Ways to Fix the All-Star Game

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MLB All-Star Game 2011:  Five Ways to Fix the All-Star Game

Though tens of millions of fans attend games every year, one has to remember that professional sports are a business. 

Sure, we hear owners talk about how "this is for the fans." and we all love those fan appreciation days, but no matter if it's a big signing the fans demanded, or a bobblehead night, owners, franchises and leagues care about profits and reputations.

That's why MLB commissioner Bud Selig must be sitting in a room somewhere with a large headache because as we prepared to watch this All Star game, almost none of the talk was about the game itself.

Instead, the radio waves, blogs and newspaper columns have been filled about what's wrong with the event, and complaints about players refusing to participate. Though the game continues to inexplicably determine which league earns home field advantage, it is now being played by several second- or third-string "All Stars". 

Perhaps you could excuse Selig and Major League Baseball for overreacting to a controversial 2002 All Star game, that ended in a tie.  It was an embarrassing moment for the league and to compensate for it, they came up with the idea to make the game count. 

The problem for Selig is that no one likes the idea.  Not owners, not players, not the media and most importantly, not baseball fans. 

While every other professional league rewards home field advantage to the team with the best overall record, baseball decides it on who wins an exhibition game that has rules such as every team having at least one player on the All Star roster and unofficial rules such as having as many players get on the field as possible.

The hatred of this idea can be seen in its ratings which have taken a nose dive with 2010 marking a 12 percent from 2009.  With so many marquee names missing this year, one has to assume those numbers will continue to go down.

With so many people against the idea and players seeming to care less about the game, something has to be done to save what was once considered the best All-Star event in sports.  The question is what can be done to regain player and fan interest? 

Here are five potential solutions. 

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