With players recovering from Tuesday’s All-Star Game at a record pace due to back spasms, groin strains and yet-to-be-announced injuries, it’s hard to remember who’s in and who’s out.
The allure of playing in the Midsummer Classic has become the NBA’s dunk contest. Mike Trout, Justin Verlander, Josh Hader, José Altuve and others They sent their apologies for various reasons. Starling Marte stole the house Sunday at Wrigley Field before the New York Mets announced he would not play in the All-Star Game.
Still, plenty of fans will tune in because that’s what we’ve done since we were kids and, well, it’s too late to give up.
Here are some things to know about Tuesday’s telecast from Dodger Stadium, scheduled for 6:30 pm on Fox-32 and Fox Deportes.
Just three: Aaron Judge, who leads the majors with 33 home runs and is entering free agency; Shohei Ohtani, the greatest hitter-pitcher combination in baseball history; and Juan Soto, who reportedly turned down a 15-year, $440 million offer Washington Nationals extension offer because it is below market value.
As of this writing, none of the three have retired.
At the local level, White Sox shortstop Tim Anderson, who hit a game-ending home run in Field of Dreams against the New York Yankees last August, makes his American League starting debut. Anderson’s Career Arc: including having to get over the shooting death of his best friend, Branden Moss, in 2017, he’s known to Sox fans but deserves a retelling for a national audience.
Cubs catcher Willson Contreras and his brother William, a catcher/DH for the Atlanta Braves, will also be featured attractions. Only four other sets of brothers have started in the same All-Star Game: Mort and Walker Cooper, Dixie and Harry Walker, Joe and Dom DiMaggio, and Sandy and Roberto Alomar. It could also be the last hurrah for Willson Contreras as Cub.
The decision was made by the MLB brass when fan voting began in 1970. The powers that be decided that the fans weren’t smart enough to pick deserving pitchers, but they played along long enough to pick eight position players. It is an archaic rule that makes no sense and hopefully it will change. every time Theo Epstein takes over.
Some undeserving pitchers could certainly get drafted, just like some undeserving position players get every year because of name recognition. That’s one perk of stardom: Entering an All-Star Game is akin to a Hollywood celebrity entering a nightclub through a side door. And once you’re in, you’re in.
The longtime Fox broadcaster will not be able to call the All-Star Game because he left for ESPN last winter. So the Twitter trolls accusing Buck of disrespecting his favorite team will be few and far between. He also won’t be there to ask bugged outfielders about being trade bait at deadline, like he did with Kris Bryant last year.
Joe Davis is the new voice of the All-Star Game. He is he Dodgers play by play and a kid from the Midwest who grew up in Pottersville, Michigan, listening to Len Kasper and Pat Hughes call Cubs games.
Davis was recruited to Beloit College by alumnus and NBC Sports Chicago reporter KC Johnson. By the way, Davis is also very good at his job and deserves a listen without judging him against Buck.
Unfortunately, John Smoltz remains in the Fox booth, so have the remote handy in case he filibusters about the state of the game.
Mainly. After last year’s foolish decision to wear league jerseys instead of the players’ usual uniforms, the white and gray jerseys of the domestic and American leagues will have the player’s team lettering in gold on the front. Have something to do with the Oscars. do not ask
Longtime Dodgers fan Larry King died in 2021. But this is a good opportunity for MLB to honor King, the Babe Ruth of famous baseball fans.
No Gen X or millennial celebrity has taken up the torch from King, a bad omen for the national pastime. Yet, many hollywood celebrities They are expected to be in attendance, including popular artists and actors who will elicit the following response from average Americans watching at home: “Who is it?”
The first line is 12½. The second game, scheduled for August 11 on Fox, features two of the worst teams in baseball: the Cubs and the Cincinnati Reds. Need all the hype you can get since you can’t really replicate the moment Kevin Costner walked through the cornfield before the White Sox-Yankees game, much less Anderson’s walk-off home run into the corn.
Former baseball statistics guru Peter Hirdt once suggested to Tribune baseball columnist Jerome Holtzman that the MLB host two All-Star Games. The fans would vote for one and the players and coaches would vote for the other. Many players, of course, would be selected for both. Everyone would be happy.
I’d update that idea and make it two seven-inning games, maybe with a schedule between games. The starters, of course, can only be used once. Before fan voting began in 1970, MLB hosted two All-Star Games from 1959 to 1962 to help the players’ association finance its pension plan.
Hard to imagine Baker doing the opposite, but even he knows that including as many players as possible is on the All-Star Game agenda. Commissioner Rob Manfred and the MLBPA agreed at the 2017 CBA to scrap the so-called Bud Selig rule, which gave the winner home-field advantage in the World Series, ultimately making it a true exhibition game with nothing on the line.
A better idea would be to give teams a financial incentive to actually play, and win, and let managers use real strategy instead of trying to make every player and fan on the team happy.
Maybe then we wouldn’t see players drop like flies.
Of course. You are a baseball fan. That’s what you do.