SPORTS with The Jock July 8

by Tom Weppel
We are already halfway through the regular season in MLB, and its interesting to see who is doing what. Without question, there are some surprises.
If the season ended right now, the Division winners in the National League would be the Braves (East), Reds (Central), and Padres (West), with the Mets having the Wild Card.
Certainly, Cincinnati and San Diego have done a great job so far this season. No one expected either team to be leading the Central and West, respectively. When you look at the team stats overall, you see that the Reds lead the NL in batting, while the Padres lead the League in pitching. That right there is the key for both playing as well they both have.
Meanwhile, in the American League, you’d see the Yankees (East), Tigers (Central), and Rangers (West) winning their Divisions, with the Rays getting the Wild Card. The Central certainly is a race, though, with the Twins and White Sox both within a game or two of the lead in the Central.
The one team that has people shaking their heads is Texas. They are second in the AL in team batting, with three guys producing over 50 RBI (Young, Hamilton, and Guerrero).
Obviously, the Red Sox (AL) and the Dodgers (NL) would be quite disappointed about not getting into the playoffs. A number of other teams feel they have a chance to make it in, also. It should be interesting to see who does what in making trades in this month of July before the trade deadline…
The rosters are essentially set for the All-Star Game, to be held Tuesday, July 13th, in Anaheim. Needless to say, though, the way the rosters are determined is a complete abomination!
From the fans voting, to the Manager selecting pitchers, to the players picking reserves, and then some random, straggling last guy, the whole thing is a complete joke!
Well start with the starters. The fans vote to determine who starts the game. Obviously, this isn’t a situation where people are deciding who is the best at their respective position. This is a thing where its nothing more than a game of favorites! My feeling is that isn’t really the right thing. Starters should be the guys who are the BEST at their positions!
The Managers from the last World Series are the ones who will manage the game. This year, that is Joe Girardi of the Yankees and Charlie Manuel of the Phillies. They determine who will be pitching in the game. To an extent, I can go with their decisions, as I believe they know who is doing the best job so far.
Same thing with the players, who are choosing the reserves. There may be a quirk here and there, but overall, they can do a decent job figuring out who is the best.
The problem here, is that there are too many players! Thirty-four guys on each side is almost a joke! How on earth can a Manager get all those guys to play in one nine-inning game? Its almost impossible. Its gotten to where there are some guys that people haven’t even HEARD OF! Is it fair to consider Michael Bourn, Matt Capps, Elvis Andrus, or Trevor Cahill as household names? Hell no!
Then you have the game itself, where the winning League will get to be the host squad of the upcoming World Series, no matter which team has the best record! What kind of crap is that? The team going into the World Series with the best record should have home-filed advantage, period.
Alright….enough. I’m through ranting. Enjoy it if you like. I’ll simply be shaking my head about the whole deal…