Want to fix the MLB All-Star Game? Turn it upside down

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As the promo count -- if not the excitement level -- builds for the 89th All-Star Game, do me a favor. Just off the top of your head and without googling, answer this All-Star question for me: Who was the All-Star MVP last year?

Too tough for you? How about this one: Where was the game played last year?

How about the MVP in 2016? Or from '15? Or '14?nike nfl jerseys wholesale cheap

Or an easy one you would think you could answer based just on who the previous year's World Series teams were: Who managed the American League team last summer?4

I'm guessing that unless it was your guy from your team, you have no memory of how the 2017 All-Star Game played out. Viscerally repetitive as the Home Run Derbies might be, their storylines tend to stick better. If you don't immediately think of Aaron Judge, just reading the name might flash you back to his exhausting effort last year. You might not remember who beat Josh Hamilton in 2008, but you probably can visualize at least one of Hamilton's blasts bouncing like a tennis ball off the back wall of the bleachers in Old Yankee Stadium.

I'm not just talking about Pete Rose freight-training Ray Fosse in 1970, 24 hours after their families went to dinner together. Back then, we all thought that was over the top. But we did not think Rose's trying to score from second on a middling single with two out in the bottom of the 12th was over the nike nfl jerseys paypal

I mean, a year later, the starting pitcher for each league went three innings -- they were Vida Blue and Dock Ellis -- and each league used just three relievers, and this was in the legendary game at Detroit in which six Hall of Famers hit homers! In 1937, 15 of the 16 starting All-Star position players played the whole game. As late as 1966, 11 of the starters got at least three plate appearances, and the starting catchers worked 12 innings between them. In St. Louis. On a Tuesday afternoon. In July. In game-time temperatures of 105 degrees.

The game used to be played to win because baseball's dirty little secret is that before their individual identities were neutered by Bud Selig, the American and National Leagues didn't really like each other. "Major League Baseball" was less a monolith than the result of a 1903 peace treaty so fundamentally permeable the Yankees, Red Sox and White Sox were ready to move to the National League during the offseason of 1919-20. It was 40 more years before trading players from one league to the other without full waivers was made legal. It wasn't until the '90s that the two league offices were even in the same building.

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