My All-Star Ballot v. Reality
Quite naturally, having lent hours of scholarly study to the task of selecting my starting 8 for the National and American League All-Star squads, I was quite curious to see how those starting selections fared in the face of reality.
AMERICAN LEAGUE (Sports Amnesia selections first)
First Base: Justin Morneau, MIN v David Ortiz, BSN. Reality reeks of sentimentality and past actions. Not only does Morneau (.280-20-61) have the stats that Ortiz doesn't (.311-13-49) - he's also a first baseman rather than a glorified DH and yes, I know there's no DH this season but does that justify sticking Ortiz in over the Kid who is outhitting and out first baseman'ing him? Not. Point for Sports Amnesia 1, Reality 0.
Second Base: Brian Roberts, BAL (.321-5-25) v Placido Polanco, DET(.331-2-36). Ok, mebbe this is a toss-up but Roberts has 26 stolen bases compared to Polanco's 3. OBP .405 to Polanco's .378. It's close but Sports Amnesia is correct again, 2-0.
Third Base: A-Rod, NYY, mutual choice, no-brainer.
Shortstop: Derek Jeter, NYY. Yes, it pains me to pick to Yankees to start the infield but really, there isn't much to argue in anyone else's favour here.
Catcher: Victor Martinez, CLE v Ivan Rodriguez, DET. Ok, now a 14-time All-Star but are you voting via somnambulism or merit? I-Rod is hitting (.279-8-44) and his cannon arm is ageing. Martinez, on the other hand, (.324-14-63) the heart and guts of his team, like I-Rod was before he started ageing. And I know this isn't supposed to matter but last I looked, the Indians were ahead of the Tigers in the standings. Not being a sentamentalist, it's clear that Sports Amnesia once again, have chosen with the mind rather than the heart. SA 3, Reality 0.
Outfielders: Sports Amnesia selected the trio of Vladimir Guerrero, LAA, Torii Hunter, MIN and Ichiro Suzuki, SEA. Reality selected the trio of Guerrero, Suzuki and Magglio Ordonez. Magglio Ordonez is hitting (.369-13-68) and has wild hair. Sports Amnesia's selection, Torii Hunter, (.296-17-63) - you could almost say a toss-up because Magg's numbers are bigger even if he's a big, fat slow bastid in the field compared to Hunter's six consecutive Gold Gloves. Sports Amnesia 4, Reality NIL.
First Base: Prince Fielder, MIL. Sensibly, agreed. A no brainer.
Second Base: Kaz Matsui, COL v. Chase Utley, PHI. Admittedly, this selection came simply because as a Met fan, Kaz having disappointed during his Met career and now rejuvinated in the high airs of Coors Field, is the sensible pick when the best choice out there stat-wise is a Philly. You see, Sports Amnesia don't vote for no stinkin' Phillies nor stinkin' Braves so in this case, reality is justified. Sports Amnesia 4, Reality 1.
Third Base: David Wright, METS. Ok. Reality shows common sense.
Shortstop: Jose Reyes, METS. Right. See above. Nobody better.
Catcher: Paul Lo Duca, METS v Russell Martin, LAD. C'mon. Russell Martin? What the fuck, am I on candid camera? What has this punk ever done? (.306-9-55). Arm? Ability to manage a pitching staff? Sixteen stolen bases for a catcher? And you tell me Lo Duca isn't even on the effin reserves? Right, Brian McCann made the squad simply because the Braves needed a token chimp who wasn't a pitcher on their squad? Alright, maybe Sports Amnesia was pickin' with the gut, for the guts of a catcher, a man's man. But still, Russell Martin? C'mon, kids. Sports Amnesia 4, Reality 2.
Outfielders: Ken Griffey Jr., CIN, Corey Hart, MIL and Matt Holliday, COL v. Carlos Beltran METS, Barry Bonds SF and Ken Griffey Jr.
Admittedly, Bonds is unavoidable considering that despite the chase and the controversy and the mad hatred that follows him like a cloud of dirt followed Pig Pen, he's put up decent numbers. And seeing as how the game is being played in SF, well I guess you can't really argue against it. And yes, I find myself in the funny position arguing against a Met but Carlos, meboy, you just haven't cut it this season yet. We've been waiting for the outburst of outbursts to sending you screeching forth into the skies of Superstardom but so far, mate, well, you're just expensive. Reality wins on Bonds but not on Beltran.
FINAL SCORE: Sports Amnesia 5, Reality 3.
Next year, scabs, consult with the oracle before selecting your teams.