MLB All-Star Game 2011: Starting Lineup Analysis

Yesterday, prior to the Home Run Derby on ESPN, ESPN aired a pre-derby show that was something like an hour long, with insight and analysis from an assortment of studio hosts and former athletes. Today, prior to the All-Star Game on FOX, my local FOX affiliate is telling me a story about a healthy 16-pound baby that was just born at an area hospital. I'm not sure which pre-event programming I like more.

(It's been brought to my attention that there's a pre-ASG show currently airing on the MLB Network, but this 16-pound baby is oddly compelling.)

Before the festivities get going in earnest, I thought I'd take this opportunity to analyze the starting lineups. To begin:

Derek Jeter, SS
Alex Rodriguez, 3B
Jose Reyes, SS
Placido Polanco, 3B
Chipper Jones, 3B
Shane Victorino, CF
Justin Verlander, SP
Mariano Rivera, RP
CC Sabathia, SP

Oh wait no that's a partial list of the All-Stars who won't be taking part. Here's what I wanted:

Curtis Granderson, CF Rickie Weeks, 2B
Asdrubal Cabrera, SS Carlos Beltran, DH
Adrian Gonzalez, 1B Matt Kemp, CF
Jose Bautista, RF Prince Fielder, 1B
Josh Hamilton, LF Brian McCann, C
Adrian Beltre, 3B Lance Berkman, RF
David Ortiz, DH Matt Holliday, LF
Robinson Cano, 2B Troy Tulowitzki, SS
Alex Avila, C Scott Rolen, 3B

I know I misspelled "American" but watch me not fix it. Doesn't that just drive you bonkers? That would drive me bonkers.

What we see here are two lineups consisting of very good baseball players. It is a small wonder that lineups this good have been assembled. I think the advantage probably lies with oh my God damn goodness you have to see Eric Karros hair. Eric Karros never made an All-Star Game and from the looks of things he is trying his absolute damndest to make sure nobody forgets he was at this one.

Anyway the on-screen analysts keep referring to these lineups as deep, as if a lineup of All-Star players would ever not be deep. I don't know which is better. I don't care which is better, since players will start shuffling in and out after a few short innings. All that really matters is that it is 101 degrees in Phoenix, Arizona right now and Scott Rolen is 36 years old. The AL should bunt everything at third base until Rolen collapses and dies. Not that I want Scott Rolen to die, but I am a die-hard fan of the American League, so what happens happens.

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