Kevin Price commentary: Baseball's All-Star Game is a farce

kprice@ledger-enquirer.comJuly 7, 2013 

If the Major League Baseball All-Star Game wasn't enough of a farce before, wait until the Dodgers' Yasiel Puig wins the fans' vote for the last National League roster spot.

Puig has all the making of a great player. But he has been in the major leagues for a month. That is not enough time to earn a spot in the All-Star Game.

While Puig's spot on the NL roster won't become official until Thursday, you can be assured he will win the vote over those who deserve to be the game a lot more, such as the Braves' Freddie Freeman, the Dodgers' Adrian Gonzalez and the Nationals' Ian Desmond.

But the All-Star Game had turned into a farce long before Puig was called up the majors earlier this season.

1) It was a novel idea many years ago when baseball decided to allow the fans to vote for the starters. Back then, you had to use a paper ballot and punch out little holes next to the name.

It wasn't impossible to stuff the ballot box, but it was a lot harder than it is now when people can sit at their computer or iPad and stuff the ballot box simply by clicking a mouse as many times as they want.

2) A few years ago, baseball decided it would be a good idea if fans voted on the final two players to make the game, one in the NL and one in the AL. Fans go to MLB.com and select one of five NL finalists and one of five AL finalists.

This sounded like a good idea at the time and a natural extension of allowing the fans to vote for the starters, but it now reached a low when you have announcers begging fans to vote and players holding up signs in the dugout begging for votes, etc.

3) Of course, no idea is worse than the one to make the game decide home-field advantage for the World Series. How is this a good idea when most of the selections are based on the whims of the fans?

If the game is going to ''count,'' shouldn't the best players be there, not just the most popular?

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