By: Kurt Snyder
As the American League All Star Game voting issue reaches a fever pitch, I can’t help but continue with, I guess, Part 2, of my rant from the other day.
If you were busy this weekend and weren’t able to catch the series against Cleveland, well let me update you: That monster that wears the 24 on his back for Detroit? He’s pretty darn scary again. And Major League Baseball needs to make sure he’s properly recognized at the Midsummer Classic, for the sake of the game.
Cabrera’s injuries over the last couple seasons have been well documented, and what they have affected most is his ability to hit the ball with any kind of authority, and most importantly, his immense power has been compromised.
Well, unfortunately for the Indians, if it wasn’t already made clear before this weekend, the power, the jaw dropping power, is back to thrashing opposing pitchers and shrubbery.
Hitting home runs to centerfield at Comerica will always be the most impressive. We know the distance, 420 is a good poke, but the balls Miggy hit over the weekend were waving at that 420 sign as they flew by. Triple Crown form is returning again for Cabrera and there is a very real possibility that this guy will not start the All Star Game.
But, I do owe everyone an apology. I blew off some steam the other day in regards to the AL’s Royal All Star mess. And I sort of communicated to our readers that it would be OK for Prince Fielder to start in front of Miggy, based on the great year Prince is having fresh off his neck surgery. Well, forget that, I don’t believe it myself anymore. Miggy deserves center stage.
But, in no uncertain terms is there room on the All Star team for Eric Hosmer, the current leader in voting at first base, thanks to suspect baseball fans in Kansas City.
Here is the biggest problem with all of this. TV and radio broadcasters continue to encourage us to vote for our Tigers. We get 35 votes, vote for Miggy, vote for Iggy…. blah, blah, blah. It makes me crazy.
You want to tell people who to vote for? Tell them to vote for the best, regardless of the uniform. Real fans of this game already are. The fans that are voting 35 times so Omar Infante, hitting .207, can take over the lead at second base are not baseball fans. Go ahead and try to convince me otherwise.
Are we fans? Or are we sheep? In this “new age” of baseball, where a view of the city became such an important ballpark attribute, patrons attend games for the scenery and entertainment. They are there for a night out. And that is all well and good. But these are not baseball fans. They know little about the game. They are the ones that spend the majority of the game just hanging out, chatting with their friends. The actual game is something just going on in the background; and only the roar of the crowd distracts them from their phones and their conversations, causing them to actually pay attention to the game they spent so much money to attend.
These are the same people in Kansas City who are voting for Hosmer to start for the AL; the folks in Detroit voting for VMart for the DH spot in the lineup, when Victor hasn’t played baseball for weeks. These are the people who are screwing it all up.
Baseball purists, the ones who truly love the game, marvel not only at the talents of the best players the home team has to offer but also the ones that may be wearing the dreaded Yankee pinstripes.
Major League Baseball knows their All Star Game is a crown jewel. But the antics of this season risk the game’s integrity and we are messing with a truly special event.
Can you imagine it? Hosmer is introduced as the AL’s starting first baseman. And as the camera pans to the dugout, on a night when “all the stars come out,” there sits Miguel Cabrera, the greatest hitter in our game today. Will baseball really let this happen?
Use your veto card, Mr. Commissioner. Nobody puts Miggy in the corner!