The New York Mets will have four players represent them in this year’s All Star Game. David Wright, Jose Reyes, Carlos Beltran and Billy Wagner will all do us proud next Tuesday night in San Francisco. There has been much talk that John Maine deserved a spot on the NL roster as well, and I happen to agree.
During last night’s Mets game, they conducted a viewer poll relating to the All Star Game. The question asked if every team should be represented in the All Star Game. The results were almost a dead tie, with 51% of the voters saying NO and 49% saying YES. I have mixed feelings on this issue. It is an All Star Game, which means only the real stars should be there. If a team is lacking a true superstar, who would represent them? However, a true star should not only be awarded that status for his play on the field. A “star” doesn’t have to be leading the team in home runs or earned run average. They can be a leader and a motivator in the clubhouse, one who stands up for his manager and teammates, and is involved in the media and the community.
A lot of discussions took place on how the pitchers and reserves are chosen. It did not occur to me that the players also had a vote, beyond their own voting (up to 25 times) via internet or paper ballot, as we would. The leading vote-getter at each position wins the start. Doesn’t it make sense that the runners-up in the voting at each position be the backups? For example, in the Miss America pageant, if the winner cannot fulfill her duties, her runner-up would take over for her. Why is baseball so difficult?
The fans should be able to vote for the pitchers, the same way we vote for the position players. Take each team’s top 3 starters, one reliever, one set-up man and the closer, and add them to the ballots under their respective categories. Depending on how many pitchers each team is to carry, the names and number of pitchers will be chosen by the fans. The starting pitcher with the most votes starts the game. End of story.
I think it’s appropriate for the reigning League Champion team’s manager to choose his coaching staff. Let’s face it, you won’t hear fans gripe all too much if their team’s manager was not chosen as a coach. I am disappointed, however, to hear that Willie Randolph had to decline his offer to be a coach on this year’s team.
In conclusion, I want to thank all the fans who did take the time to vote for Paul LoDuca – he is and will always be a Mets All-Star in my mind.
Here’s hoping for an NL win this year. After all, we want that home field advantage!