That is just more evidence that nerds make baseball better.
-We no longer need All Star Games in sports. They're useless today. A break in the middle of the season is fine--it's a long season--and a celebration of the entertainment value of a sport is always fun, but the way we're doing things just isn't working anymore. Baseball's All Star Game is a farce, a "meaningful game" that was never intended to have any meaning, introduced by a home run contest that seems almost designed to remind everybody of the time when most of baseball was on steroids.
We don't need All Star Games because we have international competition in most sports. Basketball's real All Star matchup comes at the end of this month when the Olympics start. Hockey has the Winter Olympic tournament, which in 2010 was far more entertaining than any All Star competition has ever been. Pitch football has all manner of international competition, from the World Cup to the continental championships to the Olympic tournament. And yes, baseball has the World Baseball Classic, on which both I as a fan and Commissioner Selig as baseball's keeper refuse to give up. (One of these days, it's going to work.)
So what to do with the break in the middle of the season? A few ideas...
-Minor League Baseball goes Major.
While the All Star Break is going on, every league but AAA should shut down. Teams can move all of their high-ranking prospects to AAA for that week, which is going to be important as those teams will take over the spotlight by playing in Major League ballparks to national audiences. Baseball fans will watch because fans of teams are usually pretty familiar with the names of the up-and-coming farmhands, and everyone wants a chance to see them up against other future stars.
-The All STAR Game.
What if every sport kept their All Star competition, but instead of players from their sport, it was players from other professional leagues playing their sport? A bunch of quarterbacks were also pitchers in college, let's see what they've got. Since it's baseball, it's possible to invite people from all the other major sports leagues (including European pitch football) to come and compete. Hell, you could make several teams and do it on multiple nights. At first this sounds a little weird, but when you think about it it could be a lot of fun. -The All Time Game.
Players who have been retired for twenty years or fewer are eligible to compete in this one. A local hero has to be one of the team captains. (Oh, did I mention that teams are picked schoolyard style in this one? One hometown hero, one player who is getting inducted into the Hall of Fame this year, every eligible player who shows up to pick from.)
-"Hey, Cid, that's all just baseball nerdery up there. Who's going to watch that? We want a fight. A bench-clearing brawl." Okay. Got it. How about a few boxing matches in a baseball stadium?
Not active players, of course, but is there any harm to putting Pedro Martinez in a boxing ring with Jorge Posada and letting those two go at it?
-Move up Madden day a few weeks.
This seems like the easiest possible solution. No baseball for four days? It's cool, new Madden's out to fill that gap. Problem solved. Next.
Hirschof wrote:I'm waiting for day you people start thinking with portals.