All-Star Game Determines WS Home Field Advantage: Another Great Thing About the Game
For just over a decade now the all-star game, every year in the midst of July, has given the winner home field advantage in the upcoming Fall Classic; no matter how deserving that league’s representative is. However, before the rule change, there were 70 years of all-star baseball just for show, and to give the teams a mid-season break; like the NBA. Sure it’s fun to watch the stars all gather and play against each other in a loosely objective game, but it’s sports, and the fans will always be rooting for one team or the other to win despite the importance of victory in the situation. So, since there was always going to be a victor, why not there be an award?
Baseball is a team sport that does not require a Hall of Fame caliber star or stars to be a playoff team. America’s past time is a game of strategy and luck; it’s a game within a game. Home field advantage has the least impact on baseball, so why should it matter if the best team has it or not in the WS? Sure, it may seem a little unfair that say a wild card team gets home field advantage against their opponent who had the best record that year, but if that squad is truly the best, then they should win regardless.
If multiple star players are going to risk injury by competing in the all-star game for nothing then why play? That’s usually their excuse for not joining the Home Run Derby. However, most of the all-stars on the roster that will get some playing time in the mid-summer classic are on teams that are in the playoff race, so with WS home field advantage as an award to the winning league, they will play harder, thus entertaining the audience more. Over the years, the all-star game’s ratings have been low at times, however, with fans knowing that WS home field advantage is up in the air, more may watch, as their favorite team could be very well represented in the all-star game.
If one team was clearly better than the other during the regular season, then the worst squad having home field advantage shouldn’t matter. After all, the format for the LCS and WS doesn’t give much advantage to the team with home field advantage, as after the first two games, the series shifts to 3 games in a row in the other ballpark. First of all, it’s the World Series; it’s anyone’s game. Secondly, after a day of rest from getting beat in the first two games, the losing squad has three games on home turf to gather some momentum, and momentum in the Fall is all that is needed to win a championship; just ask the San Francisco Giants. But, is home field advantage too big of an award for winning the all-star game?