I know I’m off subject with this non-football article and I may be a bit late since the MLB All-Star Game was over a week ago. Still, I think using the All-Star game to determine home field advantage in the World Series is ridiculous, ludicrous and just plain stupid!
After last year’s 7-all tie, and the game being called because the teams ran out of pitchers, Bud Selig had to do something. Selig thought to himself, “I am the savior of Baseball, I must save the national past time’s most unspoiled event, I must bring righteous salvation to the All-Star Game, but how?”
And Bud pondered. On the first day, he thought, “Why did we run out of pitchers? Because, all the players are allowed to play regardless of the game. How can we change this from a showcase of Major League talent, to a showcase of winning attitude? How can we prevent the “must have a representative from each team” from playing and tarnishing the outcome of the game?” And Bud rested; he had to take this call from Pete Rose.
On the second day, Bud pontificated, “What is upsetting about this tie? Is it the way it ended? Is it the fact that we don’t have a winner? The Japanese allow ties in baseball. But then again they play baseball the game not Baseball, the holy sport of America that has fans debating the summer during the winter and the minutia during the summer. Ending in a tie is not the ‘American way.’ Ending in a tie is as good as a ‘Participation Ribbon’ at the Little League World Series. (Did they send us the check to use ‘World Series’? I’ll have to check with accounting.)” And with thoughts of money on his mind, Bud rested. Bud resisted the urge to call Pete Rose.
On the third day, Bud spoke with Pete. “Pete, why did you do it? Why did you bet?”
Pete replied, “Something was missing from my life.”
Bud, “What could it have been? You had money. You had booze. You had broads. All of life’s pleasures, both big and small, would be handed to you on a platinum platter, why bet on baseball?”
Pete meekly stated, “I needed to have something on the line.”
Bud clicked off his phone and closed his eyes. He was weary. How would he save “the game” and the “holy son of the game?” His is not an easy crown.
On the fourth day, Bud created an expansion plan. He did not pick up his messages. He did not talk to Pete. Bud rested.
On the fifth day, Bud dreamed of Pete. “Something on the line” kept waking him from his sleep. Bud could only doze off by counting the owner’s revenue. Bud startled himself awake with the revelation “something on the line.” He called the accounting department. All-Star Game revenues were slipping. The fans couldn’t abide by the players simply playing the game for pride. There had to be “something on the line.” We could put the player’s game salaries on the line. The losing team must donate all, no 50% of their game salary to a charity of my choosing, no their choosing!” And Bud was excited! Then Bud remembered the Player’s Union. And Bud was sad. Bud reached for the phone, intending to call his therapist, but Pete was on the line. Pete spoke. And Bud smiled.
On the sixth day, Bud spoke to his Baseball flock, the owners. And the media. And then, the fans. “Let it be known that I am ashamed and upset by the events of the 2002 All-Star Game. Our country, our Baseball is founded on the ideal of a winner and a loser and bragging rights. Our faith is stirred by controversy. We need to let the players know that the All-Star Game is not just a spectacle of talent, a showcase of ability, a good-natured game of the “best” versus the “best.” Nay, the 2003 and 2004 All-Star Games will have meaning beyond meaning. The fate of Baseball itself will be decided in the All-Star Game. We will no longer go into the holy season of the World Series in willy-nilly, flip-flop fashion, by allowing the year to dictate who has home field advantage. The winner of the All-Star Game will be reborn and will determine who has home field advantage in our holiest of holy holidays. And if this proves to be a success (by measuring revenues and television share against prior years and projecting future income) then we shall declare this a new tradition of Baseball. And let no more All-Star Games enter the record books with an asterisks.”
And the Owners cheered.
And the media divided themselves into two camps by random lot.
And the fans were sated in their quest for controversy and finding a loser.
On the seventh day, Bud stretched. And Pete was allowed to come back to the church of Baseball. He will be canonized in the Holy shrine of Cooperstown. With out an asterisks.
This is the word of Bud. In the name of Doubleday, Ruth and Rose, let us pray.