All-Star Game revisions might be improvement

Published 1:44 am Monday, July 12, 2010

Let’s face it. All-Star Games are great ideas, but when the outcome has little more meaning than the pride factor for the winner, some revisions could help their status.

Now, I’m not talking about Major League Baseball Commissioner Bud Selig’s idea that the league winning the All-Star Game gets homefield advantage in the World Series. You don’t let an exhibition game help determine your league champion, especially when you let fans vote for the starters in a popularity contest.

Let’s try some ideas that are more fun for the fans.

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Fans can still vote for the starting lineup, but let’s pick the best players regardless of position for the rest of the rosters. Next, let’s borrow a rule from the T-ball leagues.

Fans all tune in to see how the players or players from their team do in the game. Put the starting lineup on the field but let everyone bat. Make out a lineup with all the position players so they get to bat but don’t have to play the field.

The manager can replace the fielder’s with better defensive players if they like after three innings, but everyone keeps batting. And starters are allowed to re-enter, just like the high school rule.

Now here’s an idea to get Selig involved. Before the home run derby, let Selig take batting practice. That has to be entertaining. And maybe let him go up against Elin Woods. She seems to swing a pretty mean stick, eh Tiger.

Don’t limit the game to just the players. Invite the mascots from all the teams and have a tug-o-war between the two leagues. The losing team of mascots must then try to avoid former Pittsburg Pirates’ first baseman Randall Simon who chases them with a bat and tries to whack them like he did during the Sausage Race at Milwaukee in 2003.

Other ideas that didn’t make the cut were running the bases in reverse order and scattering the field with hazards like those found on a miniature golf course.

Okay, so maybe these ideas won’t be implemented. All right, so they won’t even be allowed at the owner’s meetings for discussion. But ya gotta admit, if they did use them, you’d watch.


Jim Walker is sports editor of The Ironton Tribune.