Overall, the Internet has been great for sports fans.
No longer do we have to wait for the daily newspaper to get news on our favorite teams; no longer do we have to rely on highlight shows to see the best moments of last night’s game. We can follow any franchise minute-by-minute no matter where we live in the world, as long as we have a connection to the web.
However, one thing I can’t stand is the proliferation of the online Fun Police. You know the Fun Police, the people who can’t simply enjoy an event for its own sake.
Instead, they have to tell us why something is irrelevant, boring or not worth our time. Legitimate criticism has value, but across-the-board cynicism accomplishes nothing but make us depressed.
The MLB All-Star Game (and its surrounding festivities) has been a frequent target of the Fun Police, mostly unfairly. To try to combat that, I give you the Five Reasons Why I Love the MLB All-Star Game (catchy title, I know):
1. Fan Fest and Home Run Derby
The first part comes with a caveat because while the Futures Game and celebrity softball exhibition can be seen on TV, when you attend the events all in one sitting, they’re an effective mix of baseball nerd paradise and harmless fluff. Couple that with the MLB fan fest that accompanies the all-star week, and it’s a fun way to immerse yourself in the sport. I went with my family in 2006 to the Sunday activities at PNC Park and would highly suggest it to even the casual baseball fan.
As far as the Home Run Derby goes, I have never been there in person, but there’s something about seeing pros abandon caution and swing from the heels that’s refreshing. We can debate the length of the event and ESPN’s presentation of it; nevertheless, we get to see athletes push the limits of their abilities in a consequence-free environment. What’s not to like about that?