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Ernest Nzigamasabo

ALL STAR GAME=Home Field Advantage in WS?

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ESPN.com

Home-field advantage has rotated each year

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Associated Press

NEW YORK -- Commissioner Bud Selig will probably brief owners next week on his plan to have the league that wins the All-Star game gain home-field advantage in the World Series.

Selig had said at the November owners' meeting that he intends to reinvigorate the All-Star game, which last summer ended in a much mocked, 7-7 tie after 11 innings in Milwaukee. Both the AL and NL ran out of pitchers, with managers Joe Torre and Bob Brenly using players for short stretches to get everybody in.

Home-field advantage in the best-of-seven World Series has rotated each year. Bob DuPuy, baseball's chief operating officer, said this week that Selig's plan to have the team from the All-Star-winning league be host for Games 1, 2, 6 and 7 doesn't require a vote by owners.

Baseball and Fox also are considering whether to have the start of the World Series pushed back from a Saturday to a Tuesday, perhaps as soon as this year. Games 1 and 6, played on Saturdays, have been plagued by record-low ratings.

In addition, Fox is considering whether to drop two Saturday broadcasts in September, where they currently go up against college football, and using those slots earlier in the season.

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I don't like the idea. The All Star game is an exhibition. The players that start are not the best players but the most popular players. The fact that you need a player from every team negates the chance that the manager will field the best team. You are basing something real, the world series, on something phony, the all star game.

If they want to do this, then take away the fan voting and "every team has to be represented" rule. Set up a committee somehow to choose the best teams for each league.

It's especially clouded due to the fact that the managers for the games have a decent shot at managing in the world series. You suddenly get a situation where Joe Torre could be managing another manager's pitcher for his own benefit, at the detriment to the team who pays his salary.

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That last paragraph makes a really good point Oblong. This is Selig trying to make up for what inter-league play has ruined.

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Ditto what Oblong said but if they took All Star voting out of the fans' hands then you know for sure that there would be an outcry. As far as All Star voting goes Bud is damned if he does and damned if he doesn't.

A new commissioner would be nice.

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I like the idea.

How do you make the All-Star game less of a sham. Well, you get the players more interested in winning (Pete Rose comes to mind), and you give them an incentive. $$25,000 doesn't cut it for the likes of Arod, Pedro, and Bonds. I am sure Bonds will think more about hitting a line drive than swinging for the fences when the outcome of the All-Star Game could impact his chance at a World Series ring.

The game has gotten to the point that it is secondary to the Home Run Derby. The players don't care, and the output on the field shows such. Also, the 2 all-star teams are evenly matched each and every season. Each league has only 2 players that doesn't deserve to make it based on the come from Tampa Bay and Detroit. Thus who votes the teams does not affect the chance of a mismatch in talent.

Finally, the All-Star game is for the benefit of MLB. Not individual players, owners, or teams. You sound like the Players Union President. Worried about injuries, etc... Rather than what is good for MLB. I want to see players willing to compete, rather than All-Stars going thru the motions.

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Why should the All Star game be less of a sham?

I also don't particularly think making it determine HF advantage in the WS is going to have any effect on how it is viewed by the players and managers.

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You'd be worried if it was one of your favorite team's players that got hurt in a meaningless game.

What's wrong with the All Star game being what it is anyway? The goal is to win the world series every year, not to win an all star game. It's a chance during the year to bring everybody together to showcase the talent, and to give the rest of the guys a break during the long season.

If it's important, take the voting away from the fans because giving them the vote is the first indication that it's not important. When Cal Ripken gets voted in every year, when Mike Schmidt gets voted in, even though he retired, then it's a pile of baloney and not to be taken seriously.

I don't want the manager of the AL team to use a Tiger player to try to benefit his team down the road.

What if Pedro Martinez pitches on Saturday or Sunday before the All Star game and suddenly the manager wants him to pitch? He puts him out there and he gets his 2 innings of work but suddenly develops arm problems, but hey, at least the manager won the game and has a shot at home field down the playoffs. Furthermore, what if it's Joe Torre managing and Pedro is playing for the Red Sox and they are in a pennant race? Granted, that problem exists now but it helps illustrate the importance of the game being only for fun. With that extra incentive to win, the manager may be a little more cuthroat in trying to win the game. It's not that big of a deal. If it is a big deal, tell me who won the All Star game in 1978 without looking it up? Who was the MVP? Who started for the AL?

Leave it alone, Bud.

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Well if you take away the fans voting for the All-Star team, then I guarantee there will be even less interest in the game. So ratings will also go down, so they will never consider that one.

You'd be worried if it was one of your favorite team's players that got hurt in a meaningless game.

Did you forget the conversation were having? This now is not a meaningless game. It means something, not much, but something.

And guess what, I don't think Pedro gives a ---- about what Joe Torre tells him to do, even in an All-Star game. If I was pitching in the game, and my buddy, or coach mentions that Torre might be misusing me, I may let a fastball slip into my own dugout.

By the way, when was the last time anyone watched the entire game? I seriously haven't watched more than 3 innings since the 1980's, when I was 10 years old. I do watch the entire Home Run Derby though. The only thing I can remember from the past 15 games is Pedro striking the first 5-6 batters out at the beginning of the game... And Randy making Kruk look silly with a heater to the backstop.

So I guess your alternative is to keep alternating home field advantage from AL to NL each year. There is a better way. This is a little incentive to push players to not sit around and joke all game long.

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That's not going to be an incentive. 2/3 of the guys know they don't have a chance of making it to the WS. This is all a cheap marketing ploy.

And you think if this goes through people will start to watch it? "Hey, honey, I'm not coming to bed yet, I have to see who gets home field for something 3 months from now".

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If it is a big deal, tell me who won the All Star game in 1978 without looking it up? Who was the MVP? Who started for the AL?

By the way, I would have a much easier time telling you which league won the game if I remembered where games 1 and 2 of the World Series were played that year. That also may jog my memory as to who won the MVP. Furthermore, since the game would have meaned something, I may have had interest in the game and watched it.

But since it meant nothing, I didn't watch, don't care, and don't remember crap about it. Won't ever spend a second looking it up either. I may have to look up 2003's game though, since it will matter some. I also may watch the game for once, I may talk about the game, and care that Torre, or LaRussa screwed up by making a pitching change that didn't work out. My team may lose the World Series because of it. Ha, ha,ha,ha,ha,ha,ha,ha. But an NL team that now has to go into the MetroDome for 4 games instead of 3 will certainly remember the All-Star game (maybe the Cubs???). ha,ha,ha,ha,ha,ha,ha,

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That's not going to be an incentive. 2/3 of the guys know they don't have a chance of making it to the WS. This is all a cheap marketing ploy.

This 2/3 already has an incentive, since they aren't the big names, and want to get attention. These guys haven't been slackers in the game, guys like Todd Jones, Rob Fick, Sweeney, Magglio, and Brian Giles. And 2/3 is too high, the estimate should be 1/3 have no chance of making it to the WS.

So the 1/3 (should be 2/3) of them do have a chance, and now will care. That makes 20 players on a team of 30 that now have an incentive. Add to that the manager, and all 3 assistants.

I cannot imagine that a Tiger wouldn't care about winning the 2003 All-Star game when 20 of his All-Star teammates do care (some). Especially when Fick and Higgy want to be like Bernie and Manny (mainly in contract size $$).

The reason Bud is doing this is to put an incentive in front of Manny, Griffey, Bonds, and Arod and the rest of the guys that aren't willing to sacrifice and hit and run to win the game.

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This move seems to be designed to rekindle the old rivalry between the AL and NL leagues, which is something I wouldn't mind seeing. Might make the interleague games a little more interesting and competetive in the long run. I'm intrigued by this idea, and I'm curious to see how it turns out.

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