All is right in the world of baseball after last night’s Home Run Derby. Well maybe not, and you know me, I’ve always got something stuck in my craw to complain about, that’s why you all love me isn’t it?
The Game Contestants
What is the point of having a set roster if half the guys are going to pull out with some injury resulting in a replacement being added? I don’t know, guess I’m just bitter that Pablo Sandoval didn’t make it despite all the late additions. Have I mentioned that bitterness before? Think I have. Gotta tell you though, the additions of Carlos Pena and Nelson Cruz just don’t make any sense to me at all.
Pena leads the NL in home runs with 24, but he also is second in the league with 111 Ks while his batting average of .228 is 76th amongst qualifiers. The homers are great, and sure his team did a great job last year making it to the Series, but seriously? Just an awful choice.
Cruz doesn’t deserve to be in the All-Star game, and I’ll prove that in a second. Still, the man can rip it in BP so he was certainly a welcomed edition to the HR Derby. Why doesn’t he deserve to be on the team? Let’s compare his work to another AL outfielder who didn’t make the game.
Dye is clearly ahead. The distance between the two only enlarges when we look deeper.
Cruz: .326 OBP, .539 SLG
Dye: .375 OBP, .567 SLG
Again Dye is ahead, and overall his OPS is .077 points higher. Does anyone really think the 13 stolen base advantage Cruz enjoys overcomes that? Not me, especially when we note that Cruz has hit all of .212 over his last 118 ABs.
Home Run Derby
Don’t know if anyone bothered to add it up, but we all know that the AL’s foursome in the HR Derby is a bit of a joke. Entering the contest the four, Joe Mauer, Nelson Cruz, Carlos Pena and Brandon Inge, have a total of 407 career home runs. Over in the NL, Albert Pujols has hit 351 just by himself.
Anyone besides me think that Chris Berman and his “back, back, back” call should go all the way back to the bench? Once upon a time it was cute, not it’s just annoying.
I wonder how much MLB is selling those special “gold balls” for (the money ball the players were hitting when they got down to their last out)? A quick check of MLB’s website shows that they only cost $34.99. You can either buy one of them or take your girlfriend out for a couple of drinks to loosen her up. I know how I would spend my 35 bucks.
What the hell is that yellow/green line that ESPN was using to track the baseball’s flight? Is it me or did that bring back nightmares of the NHL’s attempt with the glowing red puck a couple years back. Silly me, I thought I was watching a major league baseball event and not playing an interactive video game.
How long should a HR Derby last? Seems to me that 14 hours, or however long it went, is too much.
Erin Andrews is the perfect combination of the blonde bombshell looks, the voice, and the knowledge of the game. It certainly doesn’t hurt that she is beautiful, but she knows her stuff. Unfortunately she might need to hire a new wardrobe consultant. What was that bumble bee colored get up she was wearing at the Derby? Not that I really cared mind you.
Having recently been in St. Louis I can speak to the great atmosphere of the park and the interest of the fans who were great. How is it that baseball hasn’t had an All-Star game there in 43 years? I’d throw out the word pathetic, but you know what I think about Mr. Selig and his cronies – I’m never really shocked at what they fail to do.
I can’t help it. For some reason every time I hear Steve Phillips I come away impressed. I know Mets fans are throwing tomatoes at me right now.
What’s the deal with the running foot marker for the balls while in flight? What is this, a video game? Wait, didn’t I already make this point? Baseball isn’t meant to be “cute” guys, so leave it be.
By Ray Flowers