Sixteen acknowledged followers of the Seattle Mariners baseball club were charged with misdemeanor negligence after it was discovered that they had failed to watch the home run derby contest on Monday July13th. Four of the sixteen fans pled not guilty and were seeking legal advice while the rest of the accused refused to contest the charges and were quickly sentenced to 60 days of watching replays of the Mariners’ first 89 games.
Those of us so advanced in years that we still use turn signals when driving our cars may recall the old television program Home Run Derby that was filmed at Los Angeles’ Wrigley Field about 55 years ago. Except for the fact that it featured star sluggers of the time such as Eddie Mathews and Harmon Killebrew, including fascinating 30 second interviews, the show was a bore. I believe it was cancelled after a couple of years when it was defeated in the ratings by another half hour filmed program Watching Paint Dry with Burt Parks or some such thing.
ESPN’s promotion of this year’s home run contest has been relentless but I am sure that it will be equally boring. At least the old show was an opportunity for the participants to make a few extra dollars, which was meaningful in those days. No one needs the dough for today’s showing but you can bet Chris Berman will be there trying extra hard to sound excited. I’d rather watch Chris Christie play miniature golf.
Erratum: In my all star selections post a while back, I got so excited over picking the DH that I forgot to include my pick for American League catcher position. It was Salvador Perez of the Royals, although Stephen Vogt of Oakland certainly is a worthy candidate as well.
As for the All Star Game itself, sure, I’ll be watching that, although I’ll be averting my eyes when Fox inevitably shows their new analyst, Pete Rose, crashing Ray Fosse in the 1970 game. And it will be hard to swallow also when they keep reminding us that the outcome determines home field advantage in the next World Series. Wait. I’ve got it! The team that the home run derby winner plays for gets an automatic berth in the wild card playoff! And, if they qualify anyway, they get home field! Yes!