The Midsummer Classic is upon us. For years the League that won would have home field advantage in the World Series. Thank God, that’s over! Now it’s once again a gathering of guys who have been playing great during the first half. A week off from serious baseball, a chance for baseball fans to enjoy the more relaxed sides of their favorite players.
Being elected an All Star is an honor. Especially because it’s the fans who decide the eight position players through fan balloting since 1970 (first time since 1957, when fan balloting was abandoned because of the Cincinnati fans ‘stuffing the ballot box’).
This year we, the Dodgers, have SIX, yes, SIX All Stars at the game. Corey Seager, Cody Bellinger (also playing in the Homerun Derby), Clayton Kershaw (who won’t play because of his Sunday start), Alex Wood, Kenley Jansen and Final Vote winner with over 20 million votes: Justin Turner. It’s the most Dodger players at the ASG since 1981 (also 6).
Other good representation (5+) years since 1970: 1973 (6), 1974 (5), 1975 (6), 1978 (6), 1980 (6), 1981 (6), 1991 (5), 2015 (5). Having a lot of Dodgers at the ASG doesn’t mean they are in the starting line up, though. Since 1970 there were 27 starting line ups without any Dodgers. The last twenty years haven’t been particularly pro-blue. Dodgers featured in only seven of the last twenty All Star Game staring line ups.
Is this a problem? No, most of the elected Dodgers got to playing at least some of the game. Which is nice for them. Is it a shame a great player like Kershaw won’t pitch? Sure, because it’s awesome to be able to show everybody what he can do. Especially east coast fans who might not see Kid-K do his magic all that often. But he had the sunday start and honestly I care more about what he does for the Dodgers.
Anyway, I expect an interesting All Sar Game with two great starting pitchers and we'll see our Blue All Stars in later innings doing their stuff. Maybe one of them will become MVP. It would be about time. It’s been 21 years since a Dodger was MVP at the Midsummer Classic. Mike Piazza was the man in 1996. Garvey won MVP twice (1974 and 1978) and Sutton was winning Pitcher ánd MVP in 1977.
Enjoy the game!