We are about an hour away from the MLB All-Star and one big story surrounding this game is just how many "All-Stars" there are.
By now the list is up to 84 players. At any given point in the season there are only 750 active players. This means that this year one out of every nine player is an all-star. I understand the need for the expanded rosters and have no complaints about it. What I do find stupid is how replacements for injured or ineligible players are named. Jon Lester was named as an injury replacement just because MLB rules for the next highest vote recipient to be named as the replacement. The problem there is that Lester is on the DL and obviously not able to pitch but since he got named as a replacement he gets his all-star bonus. Ricky Romero got selected as a replacement for him but couldn't they just have selected him the first time around? Of course not. There is way too much money involved. What an absolute joke.
Speaking of jokes, lets get to C.C Sabathia and Derek Jeter. We've spent the last two weeks listening to stories about Jeter being a class act and and ambassador for baseball. You guys already know where I stand on that. Derek Jeter should never have been voted into the game in the first place. His batting average was below .270 when the teams were announced yet Yankees fans had stuffed the ballots for him. Him getting named as an all-star starter was a joke. Him skipping the game is a bigger one. Jeter is skipping the all-star game because he is tired. Ok, I have no problem with him deciding against playing (since his season is hardly all-star worthy) but he should be in Phoenix as the ambassador for the game that he supposedly is. That is not happening. Jeter is staying at home and still collecting a $500,000 bonus. Disgraceful. I'll throw Sabathia into the same boat. He was named an all-star but is not showing up but took a trip to the Bahamas instead. Yup, he will be getting any all-star bonus in his contract as well.
But Selig said today that if he was Jeter he would have done the same thing. This guy isn't serious right? This is the commissioner of baseball? Why are we still sucking up to Derek Jeter? Instead of calling out the players Bud Selig is actually condoning this? How does he justify this when MLB wants the All-Star to matter?
How do you resolve this? Any player named to the team and skipping the festivities has to skip the first series back from the break. Even pitchers who aren't eligible to pitch in the game because they pitched on Sunday must still show up.