Monday, July 7, 2008

The Worst All Stars

Bleacher Report ranks Varitek as the worst All-Star selection in the last ten years. It's a fun list that reminds just how far the Midsummer Classic has fallen.

As for Varitek, I don't necessarily agree that he was the worst. Sure his numbers are godawful, but fame and history have to matter for something, even if they're not the first thing I'd look to when filling out a roster. At least with Varitek there will be a day in the future when we remember his career and think "oh yeah, All-Star catcher," without the sort of irony we muster when talking about, say, Ron Coomer. In other words, the memory of his 2008 season will fade, we'll think of his glory years, and his selection to this year's team will be understandable in ways that other guys' -- Mark Redman? Mike Williams -- will not be.


Daniel said...

I'm not sure I like that list, since a lot of those guys are only there because their team needed a rep. I guess the point is that there are pretty below average major leaguers who can lay claim to the title All Star, but the fact is that someone had to be chosen.

What makes the Varitek selection so egregious is not simply that he's really really bad at hitting, but that the Red Sox already had 6 other reps. I guess it's not worth it to get all worked up over the All Star game, but in the words of Tom Skerrit: You made a bad choice.

Osmodious said...

Haven't read the article yet, but I agree with daniel...the Red Sox seem a trifle over-represented. One thing they have tried to do in the past was to over-represent the team in whose park the game is being held...and you could make the case that Johnny Damon and Jason Giambi should have had consideration...and, perhaps, Mike Mussina should have been considered to start the game (his record would be even better if he'd had any run support). I mean, David Ortiz wasn't really having a great season before he hit the DL, but he's one of the leading vote getters? I can see Jeter, because it IS Yankee Stadium, but Ortiz? Over Bradley? Over Giambi/Damon? Harumph.

Anonymous said...

Correct me if I'm wrong, but I thought I heard Varitek was voted in by the players.

tadthebad said...

I agree that Varitek is undeserving. But Anon is correct, he was voted in by the players, so you can't blame Francona for Tek's presence at the mid-summer classic. Like Osmodious, I was surprised that Giambi didn't get voted in by the players...I thought he was well liked by his peers, and he has hit well this season. I thought Lester was deserving also. Mussina...not so much. I'm not so sure Jeter is deserving, either, but considering it is the final ASG at YS, there'd be riots if he was left out.

Clearly, MLB players don't take all-star voting as seriously as gold gloves.

TLA said...

Pardon me if when it's all said and done, I don't think "All-Star Catcher" when I think of Jason Varitek. Prior to this year's B.S. selection, he was selected two other times (2003 & 2005) and didn't play in one of the games.

For all the grief fans get for fan voting, players have demonstrated that they are far worse. This should come as no surprise. Your asking a group of people, whose singular focus should be their own individual performances and efforts to aid their team, to judge the performance of others in the group that they get to see maybe a handful of times in a given year before the all-star break.