Obviously, it doesn’t count.
The front of the National League starting lineup had MVP Andrew McCutchen, rock star Yasiel Puig, all-world shortstop Troy Tulowitzki, America’s first baseman Paul Goldschmidt, and the Hulk, Giancarlo Stanton to lead off the game.
In the top of the 8th, with the NL down by two, its vicious lineup was Starlin Castro (batting 69 points below Tulowitzki), Freddie Freeman (batting 13 points less than Goldschmidt), Anthony Rizzo (20 points behind Stanton), Todd Frazier (who is two points above Ramirez so we’re moving in the right direction) and then the great Daniel Murphy (the only token Met). Two on, two out and the National League pins its hopes for winning home field advantage in the World Series on the only player to come from a one-bid franchise who is five games under .500 and seven games out in the NL East.
With all due respect to the Murphy family, I thought it mattered?
I’m one of the few traditionalists who does not have a problem with home field advantage being the treasure of an All-Star Game victory. I don’t have a problem with fans voting for their favorites and managers trying to get everyone into the game. I hate both happening at the same time.
If it matters, Goldschmidt is the best first baseman on the roster, so he should play nine innings. If you’re pulling a double-switch (which managers don’t need to do in an American League park), it’s understandable to pull a great player for a really good player. However, playing participation baseball is not competition at its best.
It either counts or it doesn’t.