Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Just Remember

Though I'm not entirely comfortable with the roll of villain, I embraced it last night amidst the deafening howls of injustice over Jose Bautista's exclusion from the home run derby. Outrage!

Do you see the picture above? Do you remember when ESPN aired the clusterfuck of the ages, hosted by a "ball-less, drooling sycophant Jim Gray?" Do you think ESPN is in the "doing what's right" business, or the "selling lots of adspace" business? What makes any of the outraged Blue Jays fans, who seemingly cannot wrap their heads around the politics of excluding Jose Bautista from the home run derby, think that ESPN suddenly had a change of heart on the weekend?

Before we get into the vagaries of who or should be included in the backbackbackbackbackstravaganza, consider the following (All Stars in italics):

Alex RiosWhite Sox3.3
Ben ZobristRays3.1
Shin-Soo ChooIndians2.8
Brennan BoeschTigers2.7
David DeJesusRoyals2.7
Magglio OrdonezTigers2.6
J.D. DrewRed Sox2.4
Jose BautistaBlue Jays2.3

I don't mean to be a dick, but there are several outfielders who could make the case that Jose (and/or Vernon) don't deserve to be at the All Star game. I am not one of those people, and it has nothing to do with any personal stake I (apparently) have in casting doubt on the validity of Bautista's skills.

Personally, I think Jose will get plenty of burn tonight; as he's a valuable utility guy who plays multiple positions. Hopefully that clown Girardi sees it that way. Let's do right by the BAS and appreciate that he's in, not angrily spew over his exclusion from a drawn-out Bermanfest.

WAR data courtesy of Fangraphs, image courtesy of Syracuse.com


  1. I don't care what anybody says, Jose Ortiz kicked some ass last night.

    And as an aside, don't you find it odd how Girardi and Manuel didn't exactly select the best guys for the ASG? After all, the winner gets home field advantage in the World Series, so don't you think Manuel would've been better served to select Votto instead of Howard at 1B to give him a better chance to win?

  2. There are a lot of moving parts. The players select some, the league implored the managers to take utility guys like Infante.

    Cholly has to sit in planes and in the clubhouse with Howard for the rest of the year, pissing him off isn't exactly an option.

  3. I agree that the outrage is overdone, but I also think Dirk Hayhurst made some good points on his Twitter last night -- being in the HR Derby wouldn't just have been a nice stroke for Bautista's ego, it would have been huge for the Jose Bautista "brand", so to speak. Letting all of America admire his huge ding-dongs (thanks Jamie Campbell) would definitely make him much more well-known, if nothing else. At this point, how many people even know that Bautista leads the league in home runs? I'd say that group consists of 1)Blue Jays fans, and 2)serious baseball fans, but the audience of the HR Derby is infinitely larger than that, and it's a shame for Bautista that he didn't get the chance to make himself a little more well-known to everybody else last night.

    That being said, is it really a surprise that he was snubbed? No, of course not, and that's why it's a bit silly to get too upset about it. But that's also what's kind of frustrating about it -- that the exclusion of the major league home run leader from a home run hitting contest is the kind of thing that we expect.

    Either way, I'm sure that I'm not in the minority when I say that I was mentally checked out about half way through the first round last night, and I'm extra glad that we won't have to put up with a gazillion "Derby Curse" articles if he does have a power outage in the second half. The only person who was really negatively affected by his exclusion last night should be Bautista himself, and as far as I can tell, he really doesn't seem to be that upset about it, so you're right -- let's all chill out and enjoy seeing three of our guys in the game tonight. It's gonna be fun times, and a Bautista Bomb in a real game (or even in a kinda-sorta-exhibition-but-not-really-anymore game) is way more exciting than watching him hit a few in glorified batting practice anyways.

  4. At the risk of setting myself on fire in about 30 seconds, I submit this:

    Doesn't ESPN have the same right to act in the best interests of their brand?

    Ugh. Shoot me. I hate myself.

  5. Absolutely, but the Derby participants were chosen by "MLB Officials", not ESPN. And even if ESPN does have a hand in choosing the players, I don't see the rationale in choosing Vernon Wells over Bautista for this thing.

  6. Good call Drew, and that's precisely why I'd make a horrible manager. No stroking of egos, just win at all costs, baby - even the ASG!

  7. If all this is true, why were three Blue Jays selected to the All-Star team? Wouldn't it have been better to take a couple more Yanks or Red Sox?

  8. This comment has been removed by the author.

  9. @Peter D: Because the All Star game still has a shred of credibility/integrity, the home run derby is a boring fucking joke.



Send forth the witticisms from on high