Jeter going to the All Star Game isn’t the problem

jeter3400Derek Jeter is going to start the All Star Game at shortstop in his final MLB season.

Many people have a problem with this. I don’t.

At 40 years old, Jeter is hitting .273 with a .323 on-base percentage, .328 slugging and .651 OPS. It’s not pretty.

Should Jeter start the All Star Game based on those numbers? If the nature of the ASG is to truly honor the best of the best (and part of it is), then no. There are more deserving short stops in the American League such as Kansas City’s Alcides Escobar.

Yet, the problem isn’t Derek Jeter or that fans get to decide the starters. The problem is – and will be – that the All Star Game is supposed to mean something more than just an exhibition for fans. Using the All Star Game to decide which league gets home field advantage for the World Series has been an awful idea. Downright terrible.

The All Star Game is meant to be an exhibition game for fans getting to watch their favorite players represent their teams.… Click here to read the rest

National League wins All-Star Game for first time in 14 years

In a contest with a final score that seemed rather appropriate for the so-called “year of the pitcher,” the National League finally beat the American League in the All-Star Game for the first time in 14 years, winning 3-1 on the strength of some ridiculous pitching.

Though I enjoy giving the NL a good ribbing from time to time, there was nothing to laugh about last night, as the National League All-Star pitching staff was flat-out filthy, limiting the AL to one run over nine innings (an unearned run, at that) and holding the hitters to a .194 batting average. Nearly every single pitcher who entered the game — for both teams — was throwing unreal gas, with seemingly every pitch registering in the high 90s. Ubaldo Jimenez and Josh Johnson in particular were downright unfair.

For their part, the AL pitching staff was almost as dominant, save for one bad inning. Clinging to a one-run lead — provided by a Robinson Cano sac fly — first time All-Star Phil Hughes put runners on first and third after surrendering two consecutive hits.… Click here to read the rest

Discussion: Yankee All-Stars

We have had a lot of discussion here at TYU over the last few days regarding the All Star game and whether certain Yankees players should be chosen to attend this year’s contest. I wanted to create a thread where everyone could log their choices for Yankee All-Stars. Simply put, imagine fans did not vote on the game, and you were starting the team with a blank slate. Which Yankees would make your roster, and why? If someone who is generally considered a good candidate is not on your list, why not? I will get us started with my list of 5 Yankee All-Stars and one borderline pick (And yes, Honorable Congressman Mondesi, I know there is still time for this to change).

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1) Phil Hughes: As Stephen noted this morning, 3.11 ERA, 2.90 FIP, 3.70 xFIP, and 9 wins. He has been one of the 4 or 5 best pitchers in the AL.

2) Robinson Cano: As Matt outlines in the post below this one, Cano is a legitimate MVP candidate.… Click here to read the rest

Eliminating All-Star Games

I’ve felt this way for sometime, but let me now state for whatever posterity exists online that the All-Star Game in every American sport needs to be eliminated. These exhibition games are a waste of time.

The NBA All-Star Game hits this home the hardest. This is meant to be the NBA’s flagship annual event, so much so that this year’s game is being played in front of the largest audience in NBA history. If that’s the case then the NBA’s dire financial situation should come as a surprise to no sports fan. It’s a big enough problem as it is when your largest showcase is something other than your league’s championship, but you’re throwing gasoline on the fire when that event is boring, and last night’s game was boring … like really boring.

Some readers may argue that last night’s game wasn’t boring because it was close. I counter that it was boring because – and this is only one of three possible examples – Deron Williams cared so little about the game in which he was playing, for the first time in his career, that he LOST TRACK OF THE SCORE and put Dwyane Wade on the line with a tie game winding down.… Click here to read the rest

Teixeira beats Youkilis for starting spot

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Mark Teixeira—not Kevin Youkilis—will be the starting first baseman for the American League in the 2009 All-Star Game. Teixeira narrowly defeated Youkilis in this year’s voting as the deadline approached and will represent the Yankees along with teammates Mariano Rivera and Derek Jeter. Awesome news and good work to all those who voted.

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Roundup: All-Stars, Trade Market, Singleton, Mariano

A few windows I have open in my browser that could not be worked into individual posts:

  • Tom Verducci picked his All-Stars, and he only has two Yankees (Jeter and Rivera). I think Teixeira and Sabathia both have a decent shot as well, but his team is fairly reasonable. I will have more on the ASG once the actual teams are released.
  • From Buster Olney:
  • The two sides haggled for a time, and in the end, the Pirates — with a payroll one-quarter the size of the Yankees’ — relented, because it makes sense for them to save as much money as possible, even $400,000, in what’s becoming a summer of frugality. This small trade says a lot about what’s going on in baseball this season. The expectation among a lot of general managers is that you’re going to see a lot of teams looking to make deals like this, eating some salary to get rid of as much as they can.

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Vote for Mark Teixeira

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Caleb’s Door move Alright everyone, you know the drill. Mark Teixeira is vying for his second All-Star Game start at 1B and Kevin Youkilis is muscling in on his goal, as he surpassed Tex this week in the voting. If you haven’t done so already, I encourage you to vote for Tex and help him out while we still can (voting ends tomorrow). You can vote up to 25 times. Also, remember to vote for Ian Kinsler in order to keep the undeserving Dustin Pedroia out of the AL’s starting lineup.

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Discussion: The All Star Game

Ben over at RAB had the following to say about the ASG:

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For some reason, Major League Baseball insists on turning the All Star Game, a glorified exhibition for the game’s best players, into something that plays a determining role in the World Series, the game’s crowning event. It doesn’t make sense. It never will; it never has; and as long as the All Star Game continues to count, the popular fan vote method of balloting will continue to be utterly absurd.

The link between the ASG and home field really does not bother me. Is this really any more arbitrary than alternating years, or flipping a coin? I have heard no legitimate solution to this issue, and therefore MLB’s insistence on this particular arbitrary method does not rile me up. In regard to the fan voting, on a basic level, this does not perturb me either. This is an exhibition, and the fans want to see certain players.… Click here to read the rest