For some reason, Major League Baseball insists on turning the All Star Game, a glorified exhibition for the game’s best players, into something that plays a determining role in the World Series, the game’s crowning event. It doesn’t make sense. It never will; it never has; and as long as the All Star Game continues to count, the popular fan vote method of balloting will continue to be utterly absurd.
Today, MLB released the first round of voting results, and we see a mixed bag of AL representatives. Derek Jeter, having a decent enough year, is the AL’s leading vote-getter. That Jason Bartlett, the true AL All Star at short, is in fourth, speaks volumes. In the outfield, Jason Bay is deservingly first, but behind him are Josh Hamilton, Ichiro and Ken Griffey, Jr., three players I wouldn’t want near my AL All Star team. The rest of the results make sense, but it’s hard to believe 281,549 people who care enough about baseball to vote for the All Star team think Jason Varitek is actually the most deserving AL catcher. (Fear not: Joe Mauer leads the way in that category.)