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The W - Baseball - A Significant All-Star Game? Pinch Me!
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jfkfc
Liverwurst








Since: 9.2.02

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#1 Posted on | Instant Rating: 3.87
Bud is actually considering that the home-field advantage for the World Series (games 1,2,6, & 7) is to be determined by whichever WS team's league wins the All-Star Game. I first heard this idea about a year or so ago, and think it is great. Does it mean some guys won't get in the game, and some pitchers may be used for more innings? Sure, but I think the stakes are well worth it...



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TheCow
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#2 Posted on
The game was basically turning into a 2-inning exhibition anyway (as in people play for only 2 innings). I'm incredbily happy that they've finally done something useful with the game.







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evilwaldo
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#3 Posted on | Instant Rating: 0.00
But is it going to make the Pirates, Brewers, Tigers, and Devil Rays sole representative play any harder? Probably not.

Whatever happened to best record instead of alternating years, like the current format, or this idea?

Not to be bitter, but I don't believe that it will make anyone play any harder.



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Downtown Bookie
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Since: 7.4.02
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#4 Posted on
Just my opinion, of course, but I can't see this as anything other than a bad idea. While I can understand MLB's consternation at seeing their product slip in popularity, linking a mid-season exhibition game to their championship showcase is not the way to go, simply because it does not address the real issue. The reason why the All-Star Game is no longer popular has nothing to do with its "significance" because, even at its height of popularity, it has always been a "meaningless" exhibition. From where I sit, this is just a gimmick that does nothing to address the real issue of why fans have lost interest in the game.

The heart of the game of baseball is the battle between the hitter and the pitcher. This is what makes baseball the most individualistic of all the team sports. Whereas basketball, hockey, soccer and football are built around the interaction between teammates during the game (i.e., the touchdown pass from quarterback to receiver for a touchdown in football, or the feed from passer to shooter in the net-centered games) the duel between the hitter and pitcher is a one-on-one competition. Therefore the other sports can showcase in their All-Star encounters the opportunity to see the top players interacting as teammates as well as competing against the best (for example, Bret Farve trying to pass to Terrell Owens or Randy Moss, while avoid the rush of Jason Taylor). But in baseball it's all about the pitcher against the hitter: when Barry Bonds steps in to hit against Roger Clemens the rest of the roster is irrelevant.

With that in mind, one of the appeals of baseball's All-Star Game in my youth was that it was the only opportunity other than the World Series to see match-ups of the top pitchers and hitters from the opposing leagues. Denny McLain vs Willie McCovey, Tom Seaver vs Carl Yazstremski, Juan Marichal vs Harmon Killebrew, and on and on: the All-Star Game was the only place where you could see these match-ups. All of that has changed now. The top players no longer spend their careers with just one team (or even with just one league). In addition, regular-season inter-league games means that there are now a plethora of stages where one can find the best hitters and pitchers from opposing leagues squaring off against each other, not just in baseball's showcase games. Again, just my opinion, but this is the reason why fans have lost interest in baseball's All-Star Game, because there's nothing of interest being showcased in the game that the fans haven't already seen, multiple times. And Selig's "solution" does nothing to address this problem.

So what is the solution? Well, with regard to player movement, the next collective bargaining agreement could provide financial incentives to both players and owners for teams to retain members of their current roster. I would propose abandoning the playing of in-season inter-league games, and instead re-align the teams and leagues along geographical lines. That is, put the Mets, Yankees and Red Sox together in one division; likewise group the Cubs, Cards, White Sox and Brewers into the same division, and so on. (BTW, it's not a co-incidence that my ideas for reviving the All-Star Game would also IMHO go a long way towards reviving the popularity of baseball in general). Of course, this is just my opinion, and I have zero expectations of these ideas ever being implemented in the real world; but in my mind this is the direction that MLB needs to head, instead of simply trying out new gimmicks.




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mountinman44
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Since: 8.5.02
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#5 Posted on
I think it's a bad idea. The team with the best record in baseball should get home field advantage throughout the playoffs, including the World Series.



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jfkfc
Liverwurst








Since: 9.2.02

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#6 Posted on | Instant Rating: 3.87

    Originally posted by Downtown Bookie
    Just my opinion, of course, but I can't see this as anything other than a bad idea. While I can understand MLB's consternation at seeing their product slip in popularity, linking a mid-season exhibition game to their championship showcase is not the way to go, simply because it does not address the real issue. The reason why the All-Star Game is no longer popular has nothing to do with its "significance" because, even at its height of popularity, it has always been a "meaningless" exhibition. From where I sit, this is just a gimmick that does nothing to address the real issue of why fans have lost interest in the game.
I am not convinced that the idea behind this is to address any of baseball's issues or to come up with some end-all-be-all solution. I think you are probably right in it being a gimmick to give the All-Star game significance (or to make it not entirely meaningless). After what happened last season, I think they wanted to do something to shake up the A.S. Game.

    Originally posted by Downtown Bookie
    But in baseball it's all about the pitcher against the hitter: when Barry Bonds steps in to hit against Roger Clemens the rest of the roster is irrelevant.
I think that this is both simplistic and inaccurate. With significance added to the game, I think the rest of the roster is even more important. Wouldn't the Clemens/Bonds matchup be affected by:

Clemens knowing Vlad Guerrero or Mike Piazza is on deck?

Having to deal with Luis Castillo leading off first?

Clemens pitching to Bonds with a 7-0 lead in the 1st and having a bullpen full of All Star choices, or pitching to Bonds with a 2-1 lead in the 11th and being the last pitcher left?


    Originally posted by Downtown Bookie

    With that in mind, one of the appeals of baseball's All-Star Game in my youth was that it was the only opportunity other than the World Series to see match-ups of the top pitchers and hitters from the opposing leagues. Denny McLain vs Willie McCovey, Tom Seaver vs Carl Yazstremski, Juan Marichal vs Harmon Killebrew, and on and on: the All-Star Game was the only place where you could see these match-ups. All of that has changed now. The top players no longer spend their careers with just one team (or even with just one league). In addition, regular-season inter-league games means that there are now a plethora of stages where one can find the best hitters and pitchers from opposing leagues squaring off against each other, not just in baseball's showcase games.

Me personally, I think that while it will be cool seeing Clemens and Mussina pitch to Sosa this year when the Yanks go to Wrigley, its certainly more interesting if Sosa was preceded by Bonds and followed by Helton in the lineup.


    Originally posted by Downtown Bookie
    So what is the solution? Well, with regard to player movement, the next collective bargaining agreement could provide financial incentives to both players and owners for teams to retain members of their current roster.
Okay, without a salary cap (since the union would never go for it), how would something like that work? In the NBA, a team can simply offer more money than another team would be allowed to, but in baseball? Should MLB give Shawn Green and the Dodgers $5 million extra each for LA to re-sign him?


    Originally posted by Downtown Bookie
    I would propose abandoning the playing of in-season inter-league games, and instead re-align the teams and leagues along geographical lines. That is, put the Mets, Yankees and Red Sox together in one division; likewise group the Cubs, Cards, White Sox and Brewers into the same division, and so on.
Yeah, great, how innovative. So when the All-Star game comes around, and Clemens faces batters he doesn't play against in the regular season, those players will include ARod, Ichiro, Erstad, Tejada.....players we have been seen batting against Clemens for the past how many years? How is that new and delicious?


    Originally posted by Downtown Bookie
    (BTW, it's not a co-incidence that my ideas for reviving the All-Star Game would also IMHO go a long way towards reviving the popularity of baseball in general).
Maybe I missed something. Did you actually post an idea for reviving the All-Star game, or did you complain about the new gimmick?


    Originally posted by Downtown Bookie
    Of course, this is just my opinion, and I have zero expectations of these ideas ever being implemented in the real world; but in my mind this is the direction that MLB needs to head, instead of simply trying out new gimmicks.
Has any other game changed less/slower over the years than baseball? At this point, gimmicks and tweaking (a la Bud's All-Star game bonanza, interleague play, opening the season in Asia) are all the game will do. I remember the hoopla surrounding the Brewers going to the NL....you are right in sating that there is zero chance of that being implemented. Your reallignment would be a novelty at first, but within a short time, will have produced nothing at all substantial or different. For now, I think the whole All-Star game deciding World Series home field is worth giving a shot even though it won't bring back Babe Ruth and save the game from low ratings.



"You know Monsoon, I am impressed, and I don't impress easy"
-Jesse "The Body" Ventura

"Bob Ryder sucks" - Me.
Downtown Bookie
Morcilla








Since: 7.4.02
From: The Inner City, Now Living In The Country

Since last post: 48 days
Last activity: 4 days
#7 Posted on

    Originally posted by jfkfc

      Originally posted by Downtown Bookie
      Just my opinion, of course, but I can't see this as anything other than a bad idea. While I can understand MLB's consternation at seeing their product slip in popularity, linking a mid-season exhibition game to their championship showcase is not the way to go, simply because it does not address the real issue. The reason why the All-Star Game is no longer popular has nothing to do with its "significance" because, even at its height of popularity, it has always been a "meaningless" exhibition. From where I sit, this is just a gimmick that does nothing to address the real issue of why fans have lost interest in the game.
    I am not convinced that the idea behind this is to address any of baseball's issues or to come up with some end-all-be-all solution. I think you are probably right in it being a gimmick to give the All-Star game significance (or to make it not entirely meaningless). After what happened last season, I think they wanted to do something to shake up the A.S. Game.

      Originally posted by Downtown Bookie
      But in baseball it's all about the pitcher against the hitter: when Barry Bonds steps in to hit against Roger Clemens the rest of the roster is irrelevant.
    I think that this is both simplistic and inaccurate. With significance added to the game, I think the rest of the roster is even more important. Wouldn't the Clemens/Bonds matchup be affected by:

    Clemens knowing Vlad Guerrero or Mike Piazza is on deck?

    Having to deal with Luis Castillo leading off first?

    Clemens pitching to Bonds with a 7-0 lead in the 1st and having a bullpen full of All Star choices, or pitching to Bonds with a 2-1 lead in the 11th and being the last pitcher left?


    DB - Simplistic? Perhaps; space constraints will do that. Inaccurate? Not really. Once a hitter steps into the batter's box none of his teammates can help him get a hit. There's no pick-and-roll in baseball, no pulling guards. Even the on-deck batter is mostly irrelevant, as shown by studies done over the past two decades. The ones I'm most familiar with can be found in Bill James' Abstracts from the 1980's (one in particular which Dale Murphy's performance with the Braves was broken down to those where he was and was not followed in the order by Bob Horner). I also recall at least one of Stats' Scoreboards from the early 1990's doing a pretty good job of demonstrating that the on-deck batter's influence on the current batter's success ranges somewhere between non-existant and barely measurable.

      Originally posted by Downtown Bookie

      With that in mind, one of the appeals of baseball's All-Star Game in my youth was that it was the only opportunity other than the World Series to see match-ups of the top pitchers and hitters from the opposing leagues. Denny McLain vs Willie McCovey, Tom Seaver vs Carl Yazstremski, Juan Marichal vs Harmon Killebrew, and on and on: the All-Star Game was the only place where you could see these match-ups. All of that has changed now. The top players no longer spend their careers with just one team (or even with just one league). In addition, regular-season inter-league games means that there are now a plethora of stages where one can find the best hitters and pitchers from opposing leagues squaring off against each other, not just in baseball's showcase games.

    Me personally, I think that while it will be cool seeing Clemens and Mussina pitch to Sosa this year when the Yanks go to Wrigley, its certainly more interesting if Sosa was preceded by Bonds and followed by Helton in the lineup.


      Originally posted by Downtown Bookie
      So what is the solution? Well, with regard to player movement, the next collective bargaining agreement could provide financial incentives to both players and owners for teams to retain members of their current roster.
    Okay, without a salary cap (since the union would never go for it), how would something like that work? In the NBA, a team can simply offer more money than another team would be allowed to, but in baseball? Should MLB give Shawn Green and the Dodgers $5 million extra each for LA to re-sign him?

    DB - No, at least not in my opinion. I would rather consider some of the plans by those who have given some time and thought to the issue. For example, player agent Scott Boras has proposed giving teams a financial incentive for the number of plate appearances they give to home-grown players. Writer Dan McLaughlin has also expressed some thoughts on the issue on the www.baseballprimer.com website. If you're interested, you can Click Here to go there.


      Originally posted by Downtown Bookie
      I would propose abandoning the playing of in-season inter-league games, and instead re-align the teams and leagues along geographical lines. That is, put the Mets, Yankees and Red Sox together in one division; likewise group the Cubs, Cards, White Sox and Brewers into the same division, and so on.
    Yeah, great, how innovative.

    DB - Thank you.

    So when the All-Star game comes around, and Clemens faces batters he doesn't play against in the regular season, those players will include ARod, Ichiro, Erstad, Tejada.....players we have been seen batting against Clemens for the past how many years? How is that new and delicious?


      Originally posted by Downtown Bookie
      (BTW, it's not a co-incidence that my ideas for reviving the All-Star Game would also IMHO go a long way towards reviving the popularity of baseball in general).
    Maybe I missed something.
    DB - Could be. Hard to tell.

    Did you actually post an idea for reviving the All-Star game, or did you complain about the new gimmick?

    DB - Actually, I did both. See above.


      Originally posted by Downtown Bookie
      Of course, this is just my opinion, and I have zero expectations of these ideas ever being implemented in the real world; but in my mind this is the direction that MLB needs to head, instead of simply trying out new gimmicks.
    Has any other game changed less/slower over the years than baseball?
    DB - Hard to say, as I know of no satisfactory way of comparing the changes in baseball to the changes in other sports. However, I can compare baseball to itself and confidently state that the game of baseball has changed substantially over the past twenty years. Comparing 1982 to 2002 one will see substantially more offense, as homeruns and batting averages have increased significantly. Stolen bases have declined, while triples have almost disappeared. There are many more strike outs now than in 1982. More roster spots are given to pitchers (indeed, on average today more than half of the twenty-five man roster will be pitchers) which means there are fewer roster spots for position players, which in turn means less platooning and fewer late-inning defensive replacements. More relief pitchers are used per game, and the games themselves take much more time to play. Therefore, I would say baseball has changed a great deal from the game it was just two decades ago.

    At this point, gimmicks and tweaking (a la Bud's All-Star game bonanza, interleague play, opening the season in Asia) are all the game will do. I remember the hoopla surrounding the Brewers going to the NL....you are right in sating that there is zero chance of that being implemented. Your reallignment would be a novelty at first, but within a short time, will have produced nothing at all substantial or different. For now, I think the whole All-Star game deciding World Series home field is worth giving a shot even though it won't bring back Babe Ruth and save the game from low ratings.



To each their own.



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jfkfc
Liverwurst








Since: 9.2.02

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#8 Posted on | Instant Rating: 3.87
Bookie:

1. If you have a guy on first like Ricky Henderson, don't you think he is going to effect what pitches are thrown? How many change-ups do you think that batter will see? If it looked like I was trying to call you wrong, it was not my intention. I just think that there is outside influence perhaps 5-10% of the time.

2. I really didn't see your ideas on changing the All-Star game. I saw your idea about regional divisions - is that was you were referring to?

3. It is my opinion that anything that Bill James says is overrated. Not saying the guy is full of crap or he is a drooling idiot, I simply disagree with him on things.

4. I never posted that performance and statistical standards have changed, I was referring to changes in the actual game and rules of the game. Not many aspects have changed over the last 50 years.



"You know Monsoon, I am impressed, and I don't impress easy"
-Jesse "The Body" Ventura

"Bob Ryder sucks" - Me.
TheBucsFan
TheChiefsFan








Since: 2.1.02

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#9 Posted on | Instant Rating: 4.42
Yes, the situation around the plate appearance can change things, but ultimately it is still the pitcher trying to get the batter out, and the batter trying to get on base*.

After his entrance theme plays, he has called timeout twice, dusted himself off and changed bats a couple times of course.

(edited by TheBucsFan on 20.1.03 1120)
mountinman44
Sujuk








Since: 8.5.02
From: San Diego, CA

Since last post: 1165 days
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Y!:
#10 Posted on
This is Bud overreacting to last season's tie. He needs to fix that part of the All-Star game. If he thinks Mike Sweeney is going to tear around third and plant Mike Piazza like Pete Rose did to Ray Fosse just for the AL to have the right to host game 7 of the World Series, he's dead wrong. There is way too much money involved. They should just leave the game as it is, an exhibition. Just find a way to avoid a tie.



"Funaki feel very dirty." -- Sho Funaki, #1 Smackdown Announcer, 1/2/03

With A Name Like Mountinman, It Has To Be Good.
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