Tony DeMarco, MSNBC.com, on the All-Star Game Selections -- a few gems:
The subtitle of the column is:Fans did fine job, but rules left some deserving players outWith the combination of fan balloting, voting by players, managers and coaches, a handful of selections by the game’s two skippers, the sticky one-representative-per-team rule, and even a popularity contest to determine the final man on each roster, the All-Star selection process has become more complicated than a presidential election.It’s how Derek Jeter can (temporarily, we hope) be left off the American League squad, while Justin Duchscherer is on it. It’s why Morgan Ensberg will be at home next Tuesday, while Cesar Izturis and Felipe Lopez will be in Detroit...
Okay. There's his thesis -- that the voting process has led to some deserving players being left off the team. Cool? Let's see some of his examples.American League Catcher: The fans got it right with Jason Varitek, the most-complete package behind the plate in the game. You can make cases for Bengie Molina and Joe Mauer as the backup, but this is the right time for hometown hero Ivan Rodriguez to make what could be a swan-song appearance as an All-Star before the Mauer era begins in earnest.
First of all, Bengie Molina only had 155 AB in the first half, and Joe Mauer is having a sub-par year. The only person you can really make an argument for as a back-up is Posada, who hasn't been great, but has more HR, a higher OBP, and higher OPS than Pudge. But the real point is, after telling us that the voting system was screwed up and led to deserving players off the team, you then immediately turn around and say that Pudge should be on the team because it's his "swan song" and he's a "hometown hero?" What the fuck kind of voting process is that, Tony?First base: Where have all the sluggers gone? They’re not playing first base in the American League, that’s for sure. Mark Teixeira thankfully overtook a hot-in-April, dreadful-ever-since Tino Martinez as the obvious choice to start. The fact that the players picked Paul Konerko, a .245 hitter, as the backup speaks to the success of the White Sox.
No, it doesn't. It speaks to the success of Paul Konerko. Only Teixeira has a higher OPS among AL first basemen. Only Teixeira has more HR. You could make an argument for Sexson, but he's underperforming a little. Konerko isn't tearing it up, but he's a fine choice for a back-up. Except, damn, Tony DeMarco points out that he is hitting .245. So, that meaningless, luck-based statistic will have to triumph over logic and reason.Mark Sweeney was added as the Royals' lone representative, and that was a better way to go than journeyman outfielder Emil Brown or rookie reliever Andy Sisco, two other Royals possibilities who emerged while Sweeney was on the disabled list.
First of all, it's Mike Sweeney. (Are you sure you're a baseball columnist?) Second of all, why is it a "better way to go?" You can't just say things like that. You have to defend them. Is it a "better way to go" because you're heard of Mark/Mike Sweeney, but you haven't heard of Emil Brown? Who cares if he's a "journeyman?" What does that have to do with anything? That's like saying, "Let's put Sweeney on this team -- Brown is allergic to peanuts." It's completely irrelevant. Emil Brown has an .827 OPS with 8HR hitting clean-up. Mark/Mike Sweeney has been injured, and has a .834 OPS with 9 HR. Seems pretty close to me. I'd rather see Emil Brown.Shortstop: It’s an all-Oriole double-play combination, and rightfully so, as Miguel Tejada — another MVP candidate — was the fans’ choice over Jeter. And as much as Jeter deserves to be in Detroit, so does Texas’ Michael Young. Was there a bit of Yankee-hating going on with the other players, coaches and managers? Who knows? But it’s not a true American League All-Star team without Jeter, and he should be the choice in the internet voting for the final AL spot.
Oh boy. Hang on. Let me catch my breath. Okay. I'm okay.
Here is what DeMarco insinuates might be "Yankee Hating":
Young has more hits, more doubles, more triples, more HR, more RBI, higher BA, higher SLG, higher OPS, more RC, higher RC29, and a higher ISOP than Derek Jeter. But apparently, DeMarco's new, scientifically rigorous design for the voting process ignores these fuzzy "statistics" in favor of more technical metrics, like whether "it is a true AL All-Star team without" someone. Idiot.Outfield: Vlad Guerrero and Johnny Damon were the correct fans choices. Manny Ramirez got the third spot even though his average is way down, but Ichiro Suzuki also is having an off year by his high standards — not that both don’t deserve to be on the roster. Under-appreciated Garret Anderson was a nice choice by Terry Francona, but it wasn’t easy over Hideki Matsui, Torii Hunter and Scott Podsednik, who also are among the AL candidates for the final vote-in spot.
Manny's average is way down? He's hitting .272 in 283 AB. Don't you realize that if he had had just eight more line drives drop in, or bleed through the infield, he'd be hitting .300? Eight. One every 11 days or so. Also, his OPS is over .900, he leads the league in stupid stats like RsBi...anyway. The point is, Tony DeMarco, shut up about BA. Also, if I hear one more person refer to Garret Anderson as "under-appreciated" I'm going to murder someone. He used to be under-appreciated. Now his production has dropped off, and everyone in the world has started appreciating him. For the record, he is 13th among AL OF in OPS, right behind (you guessed it) Emil Brown. And Scott Podsednik has no business being anywhere near the AL All-Star Team.NL Catcher: Mike Piazza really shouldn’t be here anymore, but it’s not as if anybody truly got overlooked or unjustly left off the roster because of his presence. Players’ choice Paul LoDuca is about the best the league can offer as long as Ramon Hernandez is on the disabled list.
How about Michael Barrett of the Cubbies?? He has almost identical numbers to Piazza. Doesn't he have a claim to have been unjustly left off? (Interesting side-note: Barrett, Piazza, and Lo Duca all have a .757 OPS entering play today. Weird.)
That's all. The rest of the column is pretty inoffensive. Welcome to the club, Tony DeMarco!
Labels: all-star game, tony demarco