Our very first video of a full game was the Spring 2006 All Star Game. [ 2006 Spring All Star Game Video ] That Summer, our second mid-summer classic was held, and this time we also filmed the Home Run Contest and even made a totally crappy video editing it together with music which we certainly didn’t have the rights to. [ 2006 Summer Home Run Contest ]
We only had two Divisions then, and the East played the West, with the East winning both games. The managers were the previous season’s World Series managers. Each team got to pick their representative, long before the days we could accommodate public voting of any kind on the website. Of course, for no logical reason, just like it is in the majors, home field advantage in the World Series was determined by who won the game. Today, we do something silly and use the best winning percentage from the regular season.
During those seasons the game was played in the middle of the season as an off week for the rest of the league. It seems like maybe there wasn’t as much rain or arsenic then, or maybe we just didn’t notice, and an off week was perfectly acceptable in a schedule that certainly never ran until November like it did last year.
The home run contest, which we had to have without question, preceded the game. Doug Mah of the A-Team won the first ever contest, with just two homers and we kind of remember the wind blowing in. Kevin Hickerson of the Hot Sundaes won the summer derby with four dingers. At the time, he was the league’s biggest asshole, before being replaced first by Bret Beyerlin and then Alex Filides.
In 2007, we expanded to 12 teams, added a third division, and suddenly the math wasn’t as easy. We were probably being silly, and should have just split up the teams in some logical way, but instead we didn’t do the game in either the Spring or the Summer. We let the perfect be the enemy of the good. When we moved to Ft. Reno in 2008, and cut back down to two Divisions, the tight schedule drove us more than need to get the top players in the league in a single game for bragging rights. By 2009, the All Star Game was a distant memory, a relic that not a single active player in the league had ever participated in.
Here we are now, celebrating the league’s 10th season, and maybe it’s the nostalgia of looking back at the history of the league, or the career stats that include a few lines here and there from the All Star days…but we find ourselves longing for the game, and wishing we’d have just thrown caution to the wind and built it into the schedule. Maybe it’s also that every team probably has an All Star, or two, and it would probably be the best game of the season to see those guys all in the same lineups.
We can’t do it in the middle of the season, but maybe that wasn’t a necessary thing to copy from the show anyway. We don’t have an easy way to split the teams, but certainly smart guys can figure out how to split teams appropriately, even if Divisions don’t drive it. So, why aren’t we doing this?
So, some thoughts have come to mind.
- Schedule first – let’s combine it with the playoffs. Either following the two DCS series, which hopefully will be played the same day back-to-back, or the same day as the World Series, just before the series. The two teams in the Series can opt to have their players sit out, or let their players play and potentially wear themselves out a little before the three game set. It would increase attendance at the playoffs, and add a nice additional touch for every team, even those who won’t see post-season any other way.
- Teams – Just two teams, we’ll have to throw the East and West titles out the window, so we don’t risk offending the Central. I’m sure we can come up with good names. So, maybe we use the season ending records to split up the players based on the strength of their team. The players from the teams that finished the season 1, 4, 5, 8, 9, 12 could be one team and the teams 2, 3, 6, 7, 10, 11 would be the other. Six players aren’t too many for a team, especially if the World Series folks might want to take it easy as pinch hitters.
- Players – We like the idea of voting, maybe to add a couple of overall top vote getters on top of the representatives for each team. But, we don’t want the squads to get too big so people don’t get to play. We could have a public vote on who each team’s representative would be, but we kind of think we should defer to the teams on that to make their own nominations. Maybe we do an overall vote to pick an automatic All Star selection based on votes for each All Star squad, so the teams with the top vote getter get a second spot for their representative. Seven players might still be manageable, especially if we expand the EH rules for the game and let more than five bat.
There are probably other options or ideas that could work, and it’s entirely possible no one else gives a crap about having an All Star Game. So, share your thoughts under color commentary, and vote below so your voice, a potential All Star voice, can be heard.
Return of the All Star Game
We must do it, just like you laid it out