TheTimesTribune.com, Corbin, KY

Local Sports

July 16, 2013

Are we watching the real All Stars?

Like It or Not

CORBIN — The most popular term over the past few weeks has probably been the term All Star.

Whether you’re talking about Little League All Stars or Major League All Stars, the subject has dominated a lot of sports conversations around the Tri-County as well as the country.

To me, an All Star should be the best player at his or her position in a particular sport, but that’s not always the case.

When you talk about Major League All Stars, the players involved are voted to the team by fans with the team’s respective manager having the final say as far as what players fill out the remainder of the roster.

Just like in any process that involves being selected, a lot of times politics play a huge part in which players are selected. Where the game is being played has a lot to do with which players get voted in because New York fans will most likely vote in large numbers to see one of their own in the mid-summer classic. The game has had a reputation of being boring, so it’s only natural to try and make it interesting by including fans that will draw a bigger crowd.

Sometimes the fact that a player may have played for the current manager in the past can help the cause of getting named to the team after the votes have been tallied and starters have been named.

There have been cases where a historically good player may not be having the best season, but is named to the squad as a way to say thanks or goodbye if they may be retiring.

Cal Ripken’s final season in 2001 comes to mind in this situation. Ripken had been an overwhelming favorite as far as the votes go, but he was slated to start at third base. New York’s Derek Jeter, who was to start at shortstop, made Ripken trade spots with him before the first pitch. With the move, Ripken was credited for starting at the position in which he had played a record 2,632 consecutive games over the course of 16 years (May 30, 1982 through Sept. 19, 1998).

When it comes to Little League All Stars, the selection process isn’t all that different from that of Major League Baseball and it too involves a lot of politics.

Having been a part of the Little League selection process I’ve seen firsthand how the teams are selected, but that doesn’t mean I agree with it.

I feel the same way I do about the big boys as far as selection, but for a couple of reasons, I’m not sure there’s an accurate way to figure out the best players at each position.

When it comes to statistics during a Little League season there’s really no way to keep an accurate stat line unless the league or team uses a product like GameChanger, which is something used by a lot of leagues locally.

The program allows leagues to score games electronically and it also stores the stats and history of every game if it’s used correctly. Personally, I love GameChanger and it has opened a door to stats that has otherwise been closed to reporters on the Little League and high school level. That’s another column for another day, so I’ll go on.

I guess the point I’m trying to make is that too many times All Stars are chosen for the wrong reason.

Whether they’re chosen because they’ll draw a larger crowd or the fact that their parents hold a high profile job in the local town, it’s not always the right choice.

An All Star should be the best player at a respective position, case closed. Until that’s the case, like it or not, baseball fans are being fooled into thinking they’re watching the best players in the sport compete against each other.

Oh well, the annual celebrity softball game is usually more fun to watch than the MLB All-Star Game anyway.  

 

1
Text Only
Local Sports
  • 0418 SLHS Brittany Vandeventer.jpg Driver's Seat

    The South Laurel Lady Cardinals escaped with a 4-3 victory over the Corbin Lady Redhounds after an exciting play at the plate that secured them the win.

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • Jaguars split home contest with Middlesboro

    The North Laurel boys and girls tennis teams had mixed results when Middlesboro paid a visit.

    April 18, 2014

  • 0418 CHS Baseball.jpg Still Rolling

    For the third time in a row the Corbin Redhounds were winners on Thursday night, this time defeating the Barbourville Tigers 8-0 in 13th Region basbeball action.

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • 0418 SLHS Braden Miller.jpg South Laurel picks up 9-4 win over Panthers

    South Laurel’s Braden Miller came through in a big way during the Cardinals’ 9-4 win over Knox Central Thursday.

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • 0319 chs Hannah Hart.jpg Season taking shape

    After seeing some impressive baseball, and softball games this past week, this I know — they’re only a handful of teams that will make a run for both the 13th Region baseball and softball titles.

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • Ready for Action

    Seventy-five years is a long time, but in baseball years it seems like days.

    April 17, 2014

  • 0331 Fear Les Diamond Ratings.jpg Fear 'Les' Diamond Rankings

    The Lady Cardinals have recovered nicely after a loss to North Laurel by defeating Johnson Central, South Oldham and Whitley County.

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • Net Gains

    The North Laurel Lady Jaguars managed to pick up two wins the past couple of days with victories over both Harlan and Rockcastle County while the Jaguar tennis team also picked up a victory over the Green Dragons.

    April 16, 2014

  • 0326 whs tennis.jpg Smashing Win

    March 28, 2014 1 Photo

  • Whitley County knocks off B'ville, 7-0

    March 28, 2014

Front page
Featured Ads
AP Video
Raw: Greeks Celebrate Easter With "Rocket War" Police Question Captain, Crew on Ferry Disaster Raw: Orthodox Christians Observe Easter Rite Ceremony Marks 19th Anniversary of OKC Bombing Raw: Four French Journalists Freed From Syria Raw: Massive 7.2 Earthquake Rocks Mexico Captain of Sunken SKorean Ferry Arrested Raw: Fire Destroys 3 N.J. Beachfront Homes Raw: Pope Presides Over Good Friday Mass Raw: Space X Launches to Space Station Superheroes Descend on Capitol Mall Man Charged in Kansas City Highway Shootings Obama Awards Navy Football Trophy Anti-semitic Leaflets Posted in Eastern Ukraine Raw: Magnitude-7.2 Earthquake Shakes Mexico City Ceremony at MIT Remembers One of Boston's Finest Raw: Students Hurt in Colo. School Bus Crash Raw: Church Tries for Record With Chalk Jesus Raw: Faithful Celebrate Good Friday Worldwide Deadly Avalanche Sweeps Slopes of Mount Everest
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Twitter Updates
Follow us on twitter
Facebook
SEC Times-Tribune