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Bud Selig hints at changes for All-Star Game next year

Oct 22, 2011, 12:15 PM EDT

Philadelphia Phillies v Atlanta Braves Getty Images

Bud Selig touched on a number of hot topics with Bob Costas in an interview that aired on MLB Network last night, including realignment, interleague play, the use of instant replay and the long-rumored addition of two Wild Card teams.

You can read some of his comments via this recap from Adam Berry of MLB.com, but it appears the most imminent change may be with the All-Star Game next year. Selig still loves the home field advantage thing, so don’t look for any changes there, but he plans to do more to make sure some of the game’s biggest stars are represented.

“We’ll have some announcement after the first of the year. … I will expect everybody to be there,” Selig said. “The fact remains, it’s still the best of the All-Star Games. … We will do more for next year to make sure we have better representation.”

Derek Jeter, who was voted in by the fans, skipped out on the All-Star Game this year while several high-profile starting pitchers were unavailable, resulting in a long list of relievers pitching for the American League. One of the possibilities being tossed around is that the game will be pushed back to a Wednesday rather than a Tuesday. This may seem like a minor change, but it will enable those who started a game on Sunday to be eligible to pitch. There are still a lot of problems with the All-Star Game, but if the home field advantage thing isn’t going away, this is a very positive and logical development.

  1. Kyle - Oct 22, 2011 at 1:04 PM

    This is obviously the most important issue in baseball for the Commissioner to be concerned about.

    • mianfr - Oct 22, 2011 at 2:48 PM

      It’s still baseball, not American foreign policy.

      And one of baseball’s few current problems is low ratings, so making sure he has his stars out for the one event he can guarantee will have stars at it makes a big difference. Maybe it his his most important issue.

      • danielwestrick - Oct 23, 2011 at 7:24 AM

        Check out my idea, this would bring viewers back

  2. leftywildcat - Oct 22, 2011 at 1:41 PM

    Don’t add Wild Card teams — the current system isn’t broken, so don’t “fix” it. Instead, give each year’s All Star Game site to the team with the highest won-loss record of the 22 teams that did not make the post-season the previous year. It’s a consolation prize that could keep September interesting.

    Leave the Astros in the NL Central. Move the Brewers back to the AL (would still have a rivalry in Chicago), and KC from the AL Central to the AL West.

    Put a 5th ump in the broadcast booth right away for all challenged fair/foul calls and all challenged basepath calls in all regular season and post-season games.

    • brianbowman16 - Oct 22, 2011 at 4:49 PM

      Cities like the announcement of the all star game to be a few years in advance to get the city ready for everything that goes along with the game. It would be extremely unfair to give future sites only a few months to prepare.

    • danielwestrick - Oct 23, 2011 at 7:58 PM

      5th UMP – I can buy that! But I would say that you would have to let the “Play” play itself out. Because what if the ump rules foul (Runner stops and goes back to the plate), but after reviewing the play, it was fair … then what do we reward the hitter with?

      All-Star site – what if it’s the same team year after year, then you would have cities crying FOUL! So I would not buy that

      Astros staying and Brewers Moving – When the Braves moved from Boston to Milwalkee, it was an NL City. And the Brewers have a strong rivalry with the CUBS … not the WHITE SOX! Brewers stay in the NL, move the Astros to the AL.

  3. zackd22 - Oct 22, 2011 at 4:49 PM

    “Derek Jeter, who was voted in by the fans, skipped out on the All-Star Game”
    Of course you fail to mention that maybe flying across country for a 37 who just came off the DL to play in a meaningless wouldn’t be the smartest move.

    • D.J. Short - Oct 22, 2011 at 5:42 PM

      Of course, you could also argue that he didn’t deserve to win the vote in the first place. That’s just another problem with the game.

  4. canucks18 - Oct 22, 2011 at 4:51 PM

    How about instead of allowing it to be a popularity contests with voting going to the fans exclusively they should have players elected to the team purely on how they are playing with zero effect of where they play

  5. lookatthefarside - Oct 22, 2011 at 5:49 PM

    Is bud selig, “The Stork”, from Animal House?

  6. bertilfox - Oct 22, 2011 at 6:55 PM

    Hey Bud, how about getting the Umpires to call the strike zone? This might just lead to shorter, faster games that could, in turn, lead to higher ratings and a more relevant sport. Or, you could just limp along, watching baseball bore away it’s fan base, while wondering why even Hockey passed it by. The Bud Selig era will not go down as one of the more visionary eras in baseball’s history. That is too bad, because it is a great game.

  7. patsandsox - Oct 22, 2011 at 7:47 PM

    The best solution would be to just do away with the tired old game altogether. I cant think of too many out there that would miss it. The best part is the Home run derby and that seems to cause the best power hitters to dry up for a month or so afterwards so why not just scrap the whole stupid game?

    It made sense before interleague play, but there is no point at all now except for Buds stupid home field advantage. Put the game and Bud both out to pasture and be done with them both.

    • Panda Claus - Oct 22, 2011 at 8:09 PM

      In terms of All-Star games, the one for baseball is by far and away the best game going. I’d really hate to lose it. It’s the closer to an authentically played regular season game than any other league has to offer and it means something to most of the players in it.

      I don’t care for the home field advantage rule, that seems like a forced way to try to make the game count for something more than it needs to do.

      You’re dead-on accurate about the Derby too, on both points.

    • danielwestrick - Oct 23, 2011 at 7:26 AM

      Actually, the All-Star Game winner getting Home-Field was Mike Greenburg’s Idea!

  8. vikesfansteve - Oct 22, 2011 at 8:14 PM

    You have to drop that winner gets home field advantage crap. Especially when the managers put 7 of their own players on the team.

  9. joshftw - Oct 23, 2011 at 12:26 AM

    Clearly the All-Star Game is not boring enough in it’s current form.
    Count on Bud Selig to step in and fix this:

    More pointless ceremonial time-wasting.
    Expanding the All-Star rosters, and….
    Mandating that all players on the roster must play, thus leading to even more pitching changes.
    Expanding the home run derby to 16 players.

    I’m sure Bud will find a way to make it more painful viewing in ways we can’t even imagine.

  10. Old Gator - Oct 23, 2011 at 2:17 AM

    Bud has always seemed to be channeling Rube Goldberg when he has tinkered with the Allstar Game. Nothing he has done has really made much difference to it – except for his imbecilic “home field” atrocity, which negated in a single stroke an entire season’s worth of superior play by one of the teams who made it to the series, only to see a team with an inferior record (like this year) wind up with HFO for reasons having nothing to do with their grueling 162-game performance.

    This owner’s whore of a “commissioner” (a term he and Ueberroth before him have turned into a sick joke) can’t retire soon enough.

  11. danielwestrick - Oct 23, 2011 at 7:22 AM

    Here are some ideas that I could present to the Commish!

    Now there are reports that they are wanting to have the Houston Astros go from the NL to the AL and also expand the wild-card. With those ideas in mind, wanting to give baseball a chance to succeed, keeping rivalries in check and bring more viewers in … I present my realignment plan and the way to expand the postseason.

    Realignment

    Any Teams that came into exist PRE-1960 would be in the OLD SCHOOL DIVISION, with AFTER 1960, NEW AGE DIVISION

    So, it would look something like this

    AL OLD SCHOOL
    Baltimore Orioles
    Boston Red Sox
    New York Yankees
    Chicago White Sox
    Cleveland Indians
    Detroit Tigers
    Oakland A’s

    AL NEW AGE
    Minnesota Twins <———- Move to OLD SCHOOL if you expand
    Tampa Bay Rays
    Toronto Blue Jays
    Kansas City Royals <——— Target for Contraction
    Los Angeles Angels
    Seattle Mariners
    Texas Rangers
    Houston Astros <————— Move from the NL
    Las Vegas, Oklahoma City or Tucson Team

    NL OLD SCHOOL
    Atlanta Braves
    Philadelphia Phillies
    Chicago Cubs
    Cincinnati Reds
    Pittsburgh Pirates ———– Target for Contraction
    St. Louis Cardinals
    Los Angeles Dodgers
    San Francisco Giants

    NEW AGE
    Miami Marlins
    New York Mets <————- Move to OLD SCHOOL if you expand
    Washington Nationals
    Arizona Diamondbacks
    Colorado Rockies
    San Diego Padres
    Milwaukee Brewers
    Montreal Expos

    And to make sure the Divisions are even, you eliminate the Royals and Pirates because KC and Pittsburgh are not drawing that many fans and 19 losing seasons does not help you

    OR

    YOU CAN EXPAND with Two More teams by moving the Twins and the METS to OLD SCHOOL DIVISION and adding these two cities (Montreal in the NL, Las Vegas, Oklahoma City or Tucson in the AL)

    Playoffs

    The 2nd and 3rd Place teams have a one-game play in with the 2nd place team hosting. The Winner would meet the other division in the Divisional Series. This way you have a couple of built in races. One race maybe to get in to the play-in and one to avoid going into the Play-in and clinch the Division.

    The SET-UP

    AL OLD SCHOOL 1 VS AL NEW AGE 2 or 3
    AL NEW AGE 1 VS AL OLD SCHOOL 2 or 3

    NL OLD SCHOOL 1 VS NL NEW AGE 2 or 3
    NL NEW AGE 1 VS NL OLD SCHOOL 2 or 3

    The Team with the best record would get home field in the Championship Series.

    For Interleague games – 1 year it would AL OLD SCHOOL VS NL OLD SCHOOL & AL NEW AGE VS NL NEW AGE plus one 3-game series with the team that finish in the same position in the other division (1st Place OLD SCHOOL meets 1st Place NEW AGE.) Next Year you flip with OLD SCHOOL VS NEW AGE with one 3-game series with the team that finish in the same place in the Same Division (1st Place AL OLD SCHOOL VS 1st Place NL OLD SCHOOL)

    Then for Home Field in the World Series, you can go with Head to Head against the other team, with the 2nd tie breaker being record against Opposite League (VS AL or NL) and 3rd being Record Among Common Opponents.

    Thus you eliminate the winner of the All-Star game getting home-field in the World Series

    • danielwestrick - Oct 23, 2011 at 7:48 PM

      To the 12 Thumbs-Down, what is wrong with the plan? What do you not like about the plan?

      • firedude7160 - Oct 23, 2011 at 11:25 PM

        All of it

  12. leftywildcat - Oct 23, 2011 at 9:34 AM

    Well thought out, but way too complicated.

    Priorities should be:

    1.) Improving officiating; both with a 5th ump in the broadcast booth with all replays, and disciplining umps for bad strike zones.

    2.) Milwaukee (not Houston) to the AL along with finding new home cities for Tampa Bay and Oakland.

    3.) Leaving the Wild Card alone.

    • danielwestrick - Oct 23, 2011 at 7:45 PM

      Under my plan, I am not adding a wild card, it is finding out who is the wild-card that would be different.

  13. metalhead65 - Oct 23, 2011 at 10:34 AM

    here is my suggestion for the all star game. instead of the media whining about fan selection why not expand the rosters? it is an exhibition game after all so what harm could adding more players do? sure they may not all get to play but so what they can say they were on the team and then nobody can cry about anything other than being on the losing team.

  14. rje49 - Oct 23, 2011 at 4:58 PM

    My thoughts- 1) If we want to avoid dragging the baseball season into November (a good idea), then DON’T add more playoff teams. 2) If an NL team were to move to the AL, there would have to be at least one inter-league game played all season long, or at least one team in each league will be off every day- including weekends, of course. 3) As for umps calling balls and strikes, it’s GOT to be one of the most difficult things to do in all sports!

    • danielwestrick - Oct 23, 2011 at 7:47 PM

      My Plan does add any more playoff teams, we just find out who the wild card really is. The tie-breaking concept works in football so bring it over to baseball! The schedule could remain the same almost, but would work if we drop two teams.

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