Prepare yourself, because the following is going to feel about as forced as that ridiculous Fantastic Four/All-Star Game kickoff spot.
Too bad "Super Size Me" was a year too early. Then again, Barry Bonds wasn't on hand.
By all accounts, last night's Midsummer Classic was a genuinely solid, and fast-moving, contest, a 7-5 win by the American League, which again takes home field advantage in the World Series. Because, you know. It counts and all.
"This One Counts," unlike the last two that also counted apparently. It was emblazoned down the first base line. On the outfield wall. In the sky like some sort of Batman call signal. They might want to leave them there when the Detroit Tigers get back to work tomorrow night, lest the Comerica Park fans have to ask themselves whether they should care about the outcome against Kansas City.
As if that wasn't enough, Fox announcer Joe Buck was adamant about telling anyone who would listen that while people may debate whether the home field angle is a good thing or not, there was no denying that it made for more participatory managerial moves in the game. By the time he posed the query to the NL manager, the skipper sounded like he was as annoyed as everyone else at hearing it. Then I realized it was Tony La Russa, which explained a lot. La Russa looks annoyed when asked "Sugar or cream?"
La Russa now has not won a game of any significance since Jose Canseco was allegedly sticking a needle in Mark McGwire's buttocks, perhaps solidifying his place as the game's most overrated manager. Not to fear though. There are rumblings that Jim Leyland could be coming out of retirement, so that will settle that.
The Kenny Rogers apology party started in the seventh, when Buck and Tim McCarver said the pitcher did the right thing by going to the game. And this after Buck, during pregame introductions, presented one of the funnier moments of the night, pausing to allow the crowd to jeer Rogers roundly. Kevin Kennedy later said the easy thing to do would be for Rogers to stay home. Oh. So, collecting the $50,000 bonus you got for going to Detroit and pay off your fine was the tough thing then? OK.
Although, Andruw Jones' bomb off the lefty provided some level of justice.
By the way, last night's game counted.
Speaking of McCarver, loved his opening remarks (when Buck of course asked him about the managerial moves in an All-Star Game of importance). "Uh, er, uh….um…"
I forgot how much I didn't miss Sean Salisbury until I ran into him last night.
That prompted me to flip over to FSN's All-Star red carpet show, where I got meaningful insight only the Best Damned Sports Show folks can deliver.
For instance, David Boreanaz is in a new detective show (on Fox!), which he called different than anything else, then proceeded to compare it to "Moonlighting" and "The X-Files."
Australian native Michael Scofield, star of Fox's new show "Prison Break" (see a trend?), alerted viewers that he just learned that baseball came from cricket. You just don't get this kind of pregame analysis from TC and Eck, you know. I in turn just learned that Fox is going to have an awful lot more time slots in the near future for repeats of "Nanny 911." Or whatever other British reality show they beat ABC to the punch on.
Is it a problem that I didn't find the Burger King commercial with the guy licking a cardboard cutout of Jessica Alba all that disturbing?
And look, I don't care about this woman finding her beloved McDonald's salad inner peace anymore. I don't give a damn about her dancing and romancing over it being flush with, flush with snow peas. It's a salad. You eat it. You go on with your day. If you're that high on life over Newman's Own dressing, do the rest of us a favor and find a hobby of some sort so that I don't have to hear about 185 times a day. Please.
Learning my lesson from last year's Taco Bell corporate pregame fest, I decided not to touch Fox until 8:30 so that I could actually catch the start of the game. Stupid me. Fifteen minutes later, we got first pitch. Why not just start the thing at 9:30? That way we can assure every living soul in LA is safe and sound in their Frank Lloyd Wright abodes.
At least Scooter was kind enough to explain what a changeup was. I don't know any kid that cares a lick about Scooter, assuming that is indeed Fox's target audience. With so much of the other idiotic stuff going on, I'm not quite sure. Like who is the target audience for McCarver?
Scooter is ridiculous, but he bothers me less nowadays. I mean after all, if I had my choice of a booth with both Tim McCarver and Joe Morgan or Scooter and Jar Jar Binks, I'd take the latter.
The Sox play the Yankees tomorrow night. Don't worry, it counts.