I wish that when the commissioner's office determines what is best for the fans, that he would ask us. I have been against the new format of the AllStar Game from the beginning and the voting today and the quotes from at least the AL Manager show that what is best for the fans is not what is going to happen.
The Flagrant Fan is a typical fan. True baseball fans love baseball and its great players past and present. True baseball fans could care less who wins the AllStar Game. What true fans want is to see the year's best players and a representation by the best active career players who are still performing well. To not have a chance to see Pedro Martinez and Roger Clemens and Sammy Sosa is terrible.
Let's first look at the obvious gaffes. Vernon Wells should be starting over the Yankee's Matsui. Matsui should be on the squad, but Wells is having the superior year. Nomar Garciaparra should definitely start over Alex Rodriguez. Don't get me wrong, Rodriguez is the best player in baseball, but Nomar is having a better year.
Kerry Woods should not be on the squad (barely over .500) and Dontrelle Willis should be. Jorge Posada is having a good power year but should not be starting over the Twins catcher or the Red Sox catcher. And the biggest gaffe of them all? Carl Everett should NOT be on the squad. He had a great start but has cooled off and is hitting only .270+ for the season. He should not get the nod over his own teammates, Frank Thomas and Maglio Ordonez nevermind the ten other players in the league who are having better years.
I also have a big problem with the amount of relief pitchers chosen over starting pitchers. Starting pitchers have a harder job, plain and simple. The top of the year's group should be on the squad along with two closers and maybe the best setup man.
The other gripe will be pressure for the teams' manager NOT to play everyone over trying to win the game. We're the fans. We want to see as many players as possible. We don't want to see the same players the whole game. That's not an AllStar game. The whole thing smells and maybe this fan will protest by not watching at all. Take that, Mr. Commissioner.
By the way, does anyone else but me see how much Bill Gates has come to resemble Bud Selig?
The Yankees did manage to win the third game of their Series with Boston. The Red Sox could have really made a statement with a sweep but were not able to do so. There are some positive signs for the Yankees. Soriano had a bit of a slump but is now back up to .300. Jeter was hitting in the .260's but is now back up to .297 and unbelievably, Hidecki Matsui is batting .311! Karim Garcia was a good pickup but I'm not sure of why they would want Curtis Pride, a .256 lifetime journeyman outfielder. That doesn't make sense. But Pride was called up from Columbus and will be a moot point when Bernie Williams comes back.
Now it's time to look at the Fan's favorite boxscore players and how they fared for the week:
- Rocco Baldelli. Rocco is still struggling and was only 5 for 21 (.238) last week with only one extra base hit and one RBI. His average for the year is down to .309. The upside is that he has over a hundred hits halfway through the season.
- Coco Crisp. Coco puffed up a bit this week as he batted .294 for the week with nine runs scored! He has raised his season average up to .225.
- Hank Blalock. Blalock keeps chugging along as he batted .308 for the week with two homers. His season average is still over .330. Go Hank go!
- Mark Teixeira. Teixeira batted .222 for the week and is still below .250 for the year. He did hit a homer this week though.
- Pat Burrell. No good things to report here. Poor Burrell still hasn't turned it around yet and only had 2 hits in 16 at bats this past week. Yeesh. He's hitting beneath the dreaded Mendoza line now.
- Miguel Cabrera. The young rookie had a great week batting .333 with eight hits, six of them for extra bases including three doubles and three homers, five RBI and six runs scored. Ten of his season's 14 hits are for extra bases. The kid looks good!
- Jose Reyes. The Mets phenom had a solid week as he played three games and had three RBI, batting .273. He is only batting .218 for the year but he has 18 RBI in 21 games.
- Bo Hart. Hart became human this week and only hit .250 but he did have four RBI and scored five runs. His season average "fell" to .390.
- Sean Burroughs. Burroughs had a great week batting .381 to raise his season average to an even .300. He also scored six runs. His On Base Average was .480 for the week!