The Opossum-Palooza

It's okay. We don't know what the name means either.

6.04.2006

A-Sor: Home Run King!

Alfonso Soriano hit his 20th and 21st home runs of the season during the Nationals' 8-4 win to complete a three game sweep of the Brewers. That puts him in second place in the majors, just four behind the now injured Albert Pujols (or A-Jols, as I like to call him). Yet somehow, as of May 30, he was fifth in All-Star voting among National League outfielders. Now, I understand that there is more to being a good baseball player than hitting home runs. Soriano's fielding has been somewhat suspect, to be sure. That doesn't justify such a low ranking, though.

Unfortunately, the fan voting is usually pretty much a pathetic sham. I don't particularly care for the concept of letting fan voting decide anything in the All-Star Game (especially in the MLB where the game actually counts for something), and this is a great example of why. Some people make the argument that the All-Star Game is "all about the fans" and therefore the fans should get to decide who they want to see on the field, but this is not what most fans want to see. Only a relatively small minority of baseball fans want to see an AL lineup consisting of nothing but Yankees and Red Sox players. The rest of us just want to see the best players the league has to offer, but we are far too lazy to stuff the ballot boxes to compete with rabid Yankees fans. In Soriano's case, its especially magnified because he plays in a city where, unless you're wearing a burgundy uniform, you're not likely to be paid much attention, and therefore there are hardly any people who are going to go out of their way to push him into the starting lineup.

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