The All-Star Game Was A Blast: A Recap

And I’m right back out to Citi Field tonight and tomorrow.  Here’s my rundown of the All-Star Game, with pictures!

photo by Ceetar

My second actually.  This is what I wrote about going to the game in 2006. I bought the tickets in Spring Training on a whim thinking maybe I could turn a little bit of a profit reselling them, but it wasn’t easy to resell a standing room only strip of tickets so the Sunday before we drove over to Pittsburgh.

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All-Star Scavenger Hunt: Can You Get 30?

Hey Look, They Exist in the Wild!I created a little side game when I went to the All-Star Game in 2006, and it’s applicable at all of them. Whether you’re at FanFest or at the events at Citi Field, try to find a representation of all 30 Major League teams.


In 2006 I found all but the Colorado Rockies. I suspect with this being New York, there’s a fair shot finding all 30 should be easy, with bonus points for the Montreal Expos.


Keep in mind it can be a little tricky, because often times those fans will have bought an All-Star Jersey and you’ll have to try to remember what team Castro or Crain belong to. (Astros and White Sox respectively in that case)


So go forth and find all the baseball fans from across the country enjoying the festivities!

All-Star Week Is Here: Advice, Predictions, and Musings

All-Star Logo in Pennsylvania Station

Two more games with Pittsburgh that overlap with a full slate of Citi Field All-Star Week events. It’s going to be a blast. I’m going to all three events (And have been stuck with an extra ticket strip to them if you’re interested..) and am trying to work out how to enjoy FanFest. You can read about my previous experience at the 2006 All-Star Game here.


My fanFest tickets are for Monday and Tuesday, and I have to work, so I’m only getting 40 minutes at FanFest on Monday so that’l be a crazy whirlwind.


I will be attending the Parade/All-Star Game Red Carpet Show of players down 42nd street on Tuesday though, so keep an eye out on Twitter and here for some pictures of that. I passed over a sign on the ground yesterday that said it’d be on 42nd between 6th and 3rd avenues. Looks like it starts at 1pm, but I’ll have to figure out when Harvey and Wright are going to be passing by to time my lunch break correctly.


Sunday is the Futures game and it runs up against the Mets game, but I’ll have to miss one game to see future Mets Noah Syndergaard, Rafael Montero, and Brandon Nimmo.  I’ve never been to a futures game, am I supposed to root for one team over another? Am I allowed to boo Yankees and NL East prospects?   I’m picking the U.S. to beat the World 9-5.


After that it’s the Celebrity Softball game, which should be good silly fun at least.  You want predictions? Both Darryl Strawberry and Mike Piazza will homer. Rickey Henderson will steal a base.


Monday is the Home Run Derby. I know people have mixed feelings about a skills competition, and I do feel like it takes way too long, but there really is nothing like watching MLB stars absolutely crush baseballs live and in person. I considered standing, but there really isn’t any good spot to stand at Citi Field in home run territory. The bridge is probably the best and I’m sure it’ll be absolutely packed. I bet some lefties will hit it onto the Pepsi Porch concourse, but standers aren’t being allowed up there without a ticket. I’m predicting David Wright will launch a home run that will smack into the glass of the Acela club. Remember, the better David Wright does, the cheaper tickets are for the Phillies series next weekend.


The actual All-Star Game is Tuesday night.  The beer selection is broken down here. The game in it of itself is basically a parade of All-Stars, and while I don’t really care who wins, I will enjoy watching my favorite players on the field playing a great sport. I’ll pick the National League to win 15-4. Why not?


Then comes what is perhaps the worst two days for sports because there is absolutely no games.






The All-Star


All-Star Game stuff around New York City

July is here and the All-Star Game at Citi Field is just a week away. As such, there are logos and signs around New York City, besides the Apples on Parade, and traffic signs are warning about heavy congestion around Citi Field next week.


We’ve got the advertisements on the side of phone booths (you can look those up on Wikipedia if you don’t know).

photo by Ceetar


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John Franco, Brandon Nimmo, Doc Gooden, etc

Yesterday I had the opportunity to interview John Franco, who was handing out free ice cream in Bryant Park. I got his take on Matt Harvey, Blue Jerseys, Old-Timers Day and even The Cyclone.


You should already be voting for David Wright for the All-Star Game, but you should also be voting for Brandon Nimmo to get the last spot in the Futures Game on the Sunday before.  Noah Syndergaard and Rafael Montero will already be there representing the Mets.


Dwight Gooden‘s doing an exclusive Q & A and signing of his book in the Rotunda before tonight’s game. Ticket’s available.


Tonight starts the last home stand before the All-Star Game. It’s also Harvey day. Follow me on Twitter for some pregame batting practice pictures and anything else I random take during the game. I’ll be on the hunt for anything that may have showed up for the All-Star Game any of this delicious food.

Mets All-Star Game Apple Parade in NYC

I noticed this giant Apple in Grand Central Station during lunch today, only to discover it was part of something bigger. A Mets Apple Parade!


There are 35 apples around New York City, all in Manhattan sans the MLB All-Star Game apple that’s in front of Citi Field. There is one for each team, one for the National League, one for the American League and then two for the departed New York Giants and Brooklyn Dodgers. (@fletch788 saw the Brooklyn one, also in Grand Central)


More info about the Apple Parade.


If you Instagram an apple, or 15 of them, you are entered to win a prize which may include World Series tickets.


My first instinct was obviously to look up where the Mets apple was, and fittingly it’s in front of/near the SNY offices, but when I got there it was nowhere to be found. Apparently they aren’t all set up yet. We’ll find out shortly if the one at Citi Field is there as the gates open in a couple of hours for tonight’s game. I was sort of hoping the Yankees apple was buried in a deserted alley somewhere, but no such luck; it’s just off Times Square. That may be fitting as Yankee Stadium closely resembles Times Square sometimes.


Some of the locations just seem odd though; why is the Los Angeles Dodgers’ apple way up at a T-Mobile in Harlem?


Pondering The Delay in the 2013 All-Star Game Announcement

This post is dedicated to the memory of Gary Carter, a true Mets All-Star.

Wright touches home after homering in the 2006 All-Star GameMets Police has been pondering why there has been no official announcement of where the 2013 MLB All-Star Game will be played.  Unofficially it’s going to be at Citi Field, but that news is been pending for a long time now, and it’s past the time we usually have these things announced.


I had speculated that it was related to first Bud Selig’s pending renewal of his term as commissioner, and then not wanting to announce things during the Giants Super Bowl run.  Now it’s almost Spring Training and we’ve heard nothing.


But something else is happening in 2013: interleague play and realignment.   This will probably add more interleague games, and all year long.  Perhaps Major League Baseball is considering changing the All-Star Game from an AL versus NL to something akin to the NHL with captains picking teams.  Or perhaps they’ll go with something they did for the Home Run Derby a couple of years ago; teams based on country of origin.  Coincidentally 2013 will also be the third edition of the World Baseball Classic, so the game will already be in an international mode.


I have no idea why something like that would need to delay the announcement though.  Maybe they just want to have more details about it when they do eventually let us know.

Home Run Derby Alternatives

David Wright at the 2006 Home Run DerbyTholeMoley over at Mr. Met Is My Brother wrote a post about watching the NHL All-Star Game.  Actually she’s wrote a couple of them, but I want to talk about one of them specifically.  I wanted to watch the festivities this weekend, especially with John Tavares a part of them, but I had other things to deal with and missed it.  TholeMoley highlighted some of the events in the skills competition, and talks about how much better it is than the Home Run Derby.


Now, personally I like the Home Run Derby.  There is nothing more magnificent in all of sports than watching a baseball player swing and smash a baseball 400+ feet in the air.  There’s just a simple majestic beauty to it, especially if you see it in person like I did in 2006.  (And that’s not just because you can’t hear Chris Berman)  Most of what people object to about the Derby is the massive amount of time between batters and all the other stuff besides the mammoth home runs.


So broadening the spectrum might be fun and could include more than just the Home Run Derby and the random eight players they can find to participate.  TholeMoley suggests a fastest trip around the bases to parallel the fastest skater event.  She also mentions fastest players, hardest throwers, and the most accurate throwers getting their time to shine.


You could do an accuracy event.  Set up some milk bottles on a table, and have the players throw a baseball at them.  If they hit it they advance to the next round and take five steps back.  Repeat this until you have a winner.  If all players miss at the same time, simply repeat that round.


Not to take anything away from the kids that get to shag balls in the outfield, but you could position the All-Star outfielders at the walls and let them try to rob home runs all night.  Most of them clear the fence by quite a bit though.


Perhaps giving out more titles is the way to go.  In a social media society we’re all used to get badges and titles for things as simple as checking in to the ballpark more than anyone else.  Instead of just crowning a winner, crown the guy with the farthest home run, with the most home runs back to back and the guy with the highest single round total.


These are just a couple of suggestions, and none of them seem too much different than simple warm-up activities so there shouldn’t be any real concern about anyone getting hurt.  It’d be an interesting way to spice up the event and might spike interest that has been fading over the years.  There are other things they can do to, like break up the idea of National League versus American League since the advent of interleague play takes away some of the mystery of it.  It’s pretty clear that the All-Star Game is not perfect, and MLB should always be looking to tweak it.