Monday, July 9, 2007

All-Star Game Preview, Predictions and Notes

By Michael Haas
The All-Star game tonight in San Francisco looks to be a fun and competitive event, featuring some of the biggest and most exciting names in baseball. A lot is at stake this year, as the leagues battle to gain home field advantage for the '07 World Series. Let’s take a look at the players.

Here’s how I would start the lineups:
Ichiro Suzuki
Placido Polanco
Alex Rodriguez
Magglio Ordonez
David Ortiz
Vladimir guerrero
Ivan Rodriguez
Danny Haren
Derek jeter
José Reyes
Chase Utley
Carlos beltran
Prince Fielder
Ken Griffey Jr
Russell Martin
David Wright
Jake Peavy
Barry Bonds

I predict the pitchers will go like this:
Dan Haren: 2 innings
Josh Beckett: 3 innings ( I want to see how he does against the whole line-up)
John Lackey: 1 inning
Bob Jenks: 1 inning
Fransisco Rodriguez: 2/3 inning
Jon Papelbon: 1/3 inning
Captain Cheesburger Sabathia: won’t pitch. too fat.
Gil Meche: Won’t pitch - he plays for the Royals
Johan Santana: need him to start Thursday – hopefully he had a good bullpen session on Sunday or Monday.
Something Called J.J. Putz: Sounds like an Auto Repair Shop
Justin Verlander: By all accounts, a terrible human being. Leyland doesn’t even like him.
Hideki Okajima: Won’t play because he hurts himself during the pre-game somehow. That’s what you get for taking Sideshow Pats spot!

Jake Peavy: 3 innings
Brad Penny: 1 inning
Cole Hamels: 1 inning (strikes out side. I love Cole Hamels)
Ben Sheets: 1 inning
Fransisco Cordero: 1 1/3 inning
Billy Wagner: 1/3 inning
Something Called Takashi Saito: 1/3 inning
Trevor Hoffman: 1 inning

The American League appears to have a slight edge. It seems likely that Torii Hunter will hit a home run off of Trevor Hoffman in the top of the ninth to put the A.L. on top. In the bottom of the inning, K-rod will come in and get a quick out, followed by a single. He’ll probably get a guy to hit a foul pop for the second out, but then he’ll walk a guy, putting the go ahead run on first base. So Leyland will bring in the righty Papelbon to face Carlos Lee. Hunter will surely rob his homer and the game will be over. Sounds exciting!

Other All-Star related notes:
  • Morneau lost the home run derby. He only hit four bombs. But on the bright side, he was the only player to hit one into McCovey Cove. Maybe that'll shut up all the whiny 'Jeter should have won the MVP' bitchers. No, wait. It won't.
  • People are so jaded to the Barry Bonds mess that they have given up ripping on him. I guess that's fine; but seriously, there's no way that MLB and the Giants didn't rig this thing to get him into the All-Star game. Soriano was leading him almost the whole entire voting period and he somehow made up a ton of ground on the last day of voting. It's bullshit. And don't give me that 'well he should be there cuz he has 751 homers and it's his stadium' This is the All-Star game, not some made-for-Tv showcase for the best players to scrimmage each other. Whats that? It is a made-for-Tv showcase for the best players to scrimmage each other? Well it's still bullshit.
  • TC the Bear, my favorite baseball mascot, won the mascot home run derby. At least one lefty masher from Minnesota won a derby. Personally, I feel that Morneau should have worn the costume during his home run derby.
  • I have NINE All-Stars on my fantasy team, by far the most of anyone in our 11 team league. But I'm only in like 4th place. This points to either A) my guys are barely All-Stars (Meche, Oswalt, Michael Young) or B) the rest of my fantasy team blows (Scott Rolen)
  • I must have missed the explanation for why the game has been held in an N.L. park two years in a row. Someone has to look up the last time that this happened. They raised the stakes a couple of years ago by giving World Series home field advantage to the winner of the game, but they give home field advantage to the N.L. two years in a row. Hypocrites. I doubt it would have been a problem for the Metrodome to host it's second All-Star game. All you have to do is ask, Bud.
  • And on that thought, how much would you be willing to bet that both Oakland (Fremont) and the New Yankee Stadium host All-Star games before the new Twins stadium? I love complaining about how we get screwed over here in Minnesota.
  • Love him or hate him (or don't know who he is) you will have to get used to Eric Byrnes. FOX just loves this guy for some reason. They even plan to put him in a kayak for the game tonight. What a goofball.
  • I don't know why, but I really enjoy the All-Star game.

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soup said...

My prediction: Jeter lays down a sacrifice bunt in the first inning and they talk about it for the rest of the game except for a few brief seconds they allot to occasionally mispronouncing Morneau's name.

I used to like Eric Byrnes until he started talking. Why don't they get someone with true charisma like Joe Mauer. He is just so good at interviews and never says "you know" every sentence.

haasertime said...

if you were wondering why i placed barry bonds and derek jeter at the BOTTOM of the lineups, it's because they are my two least favorite players.

unfortunately that bias threw off an otherwise pretty decent prediction. the lineups were announced, and Bonds is hitting 2nd.

2nd? what?

oh yeah, he'll only have to play one inning and then he can go home and play with his dingy. so mlb rigged the whole thing just so he could give lame interviews during the home run derby, be introduced to the home fans (he'd get booed anywhere else) and bat one time.

If he bats twice, I will eat my hat.

brex said...

Both Jeter and Bonds deserve to be all stars. They are great players.

Daymonster said...

I was going to write a post about what sucked about the HR derby, but I won't since Mike's post was so darn good.

I will however list what sucked about the HR Derby.

- Not a single ball (that wasn't foul) went into the cove. Therefore limiting camera time for Kenny Mayne

- The stupid commercial where the guy talks about how the footage of Hank Aaron makes him think of Hank Aaron. Or really, that's strange.

- Every time anyone would come up to bat and they would talk about pressure, Dusty Baker or Kruk would talk about how, "if anyone can handle pressure, (insert derby participant) can."

- The annoying posse that was all about getting on TV. Toweling off Pujols, jumping on Vlad. If I see that dumbass in the black and white airbrushed shirt one more time I am going to kill somebody.

- It was way too long. I missed the Bronx is burning because of that.

- Bonds is a bitch and wouldn’t play. THEN they interviewed him, his bulbous head was 41” large in my living room (which is also my bedroom, kitchen and hallway).

- The Wind and Sun ruined it for the lefties. Morneau would have won otherwise.

- Did I mention it was way too long?

TwinsWin83 said...

I too believe that MLB had something to do with Bonds getting into the game as a starter. They did it to avoid any kind of drama or controversy that would have been occured if the NL manager had to decide whether or not to select him because I dont think he would have been voted in by his fellow players. Bonds is a great baseball player but this entire situation is depressing and bad for the game. Can you imagine if Griffey Jr. had never had injury problems and him and Bonds were racing against one another right now to break Aarons record? Man that would be sweet.

TwinsWin83 said...

About Verlander, a good friend of mine took a red eye flight out of washington this past winter and sat next to Jermey Bonderman the entire flight and they chatted it up and Bonderman talked about what a pussy Verlander is and how no one of the staff can stand him. So Haas your statement is actualy pretty acurate.

haasertime said...

thats crazy. i was being sarcastic cuz i had heard only good things about verlander. but that's cool, cuz i love to dislike division opponents.

brex only chimes in to disagree with whats written. most of the time he just throws things out to get my goat. like right now. i never said they didn't deserve to be allstars or weren't good players, i just said they are my least favorite. or like that one time he ripped foss for being negative in his 'grinds my gears post' you choose life? prove it.

john miller pronounces everything weird. its annoying. belTRAAN, and so on. he's better than chirs berman though. i didnt watch any of the derby last night, but i would imagine that he was very annoying.

Daymonster said...

back, back, back, back, back, back.

Also it was anoying because, they would joke about it just being "back, back" for one that reached the warning track and also "back, back", for vlad's low long drive hr's

brex said...

This is true, I like to disagree with short, to the point comments every now and then. But it's not to "get your goat". It's just how I think. Aside from all the garbage in the media, they are very good players, and personally I don't have anything against them.

How do I "rip foss" that I choose life? I should write a follow up article about positive things. oh wait, you did that haas.

TwinsWin83 said...

facial Leflure, total facial

bizmarkie507 said...

first off, when Chris Bierman announced albert pujols as albert, winnie the pooh-hols last night, I turned the channel and watched steven segal's hard to kill for the next half hour.

second, haas thats an awful lot of AL pitchers that you predict wont throw a single pitch.

third, I don't ever want another twin to be in the home run derby again. I love the derbys when no twin takes part, so I can cheer and be in awe at all the home runs, instead of yell at the T.V. screen when matt holliday crushes a 460 foot bomb.

And as far as bonds, you all know my stance.

the Dutchie said...

I've seen TC Bear participate in about ten HR derbies in my life, and i have never seen him come close to losing any of them. I don't know who is under that friendly ball of fur, but we should sign him up.

Brex, let it be known that I'm on your side.

I hope your hat tastes good.

Daymonster said...

I was thinking about this today. Morneau hit more HRs on Friday on less outs against the sox than he did at the derby.

haasertime said...

yeah, the home run derby sucks when twins play in it, unless they somehow win. that would be cool.

and waters you're probably right, more pitcher will pitch than i predicted. i'm sure if i had done a little more research, i would have found who's available and stuff. i'm sure no pitcher will go loner than two innings. but i've heard the mlb is starting to get away from the 'ok, now lets make sure everyone gets to play, alright' tball league mentality.

there's no way i'll eat my hat on this one. 2nd, c'mon.

the Dutchie said...


Daymonster said...

Yes. Yes. Consume your cap.

haasertime said...

i can't

i don't have any ketchup(catsup)