I Smell A Rat, Philly-Style

July 10

             Pablo Sandoval can still make the All-Star game in St. Louis.  I’m sure he can buy some tickets.

             Phillies outfielder Jayson Werth has been chosen to replace the injured Carlos Beltran on the NL .  Yesterday national and local media sources were under the impression that Phillies manager Charlie Manuel would make the call, and that Sandoval still had a shot.  Today we’re being told, oh no, it’s a Major League Baseball edict.

             MLB.com says an injured starter is to be replaced with the top vote-getter on the player ballot who is not a starter.   Yet an MLB.com article yesterday seemed to indicate Manuel would work with major league baseball on the selection, and it didn’t seem a lock that Werth was chosen.

             Where is the truth?  Probably somewhere in-between.      

             Charlie Manuel is manager of the World Series champion Phillies, and his guy got in.  Five Phillies are on the team.  Phillies fans overwhelmed the Internet to vote in Shane Victorino over Sandoval.  I don’t think it’s a stretch to say, “to the victors go the spoils.”  And in this case, the victor is back east, close to the media-advertising epicenter.

             If I had to guess, it went down like this:  Manuel wanted his guy, and as long as his selection wasn’t ridiculous, Major League Baseball wasn’t going to veto him.  The “edict” is likely more of a guideline.  On top of that, few people east of the Rockies were going to get upset that Kung Fu Panda didn’t make it.  All of the caterwauling going on in the Bay Area today is falling on deaf ears along the eastern seaboard.

            None of this is meant to denigrate Jayson Werth.  He’s having a fine season and has been scalding hot this week.  His combination of 20 home runs, 12 stolen bases, and good outfield play make him worthy for the All-Star team, but not as worthy of Sandoval.  In fact it’s really not even close.

             In any impartial analysis of player contributions, Sandoval comes out ahead.   But obviously Manuel is not impartial.  Manuel wants to make sure his guy Werth continues to play hard for him in the second half.   But what would have happened if another player was hurt?  Would another Phillie go in?  And so on, and so on?           

             It’s simple : what’s right is right.   I smell a rat.  Let someone else pick replacement players, not the manager.   And please God, not Bud Selig.

One Response to “I Smell A Rat, Philly-Style”

  1. Don Says:

    A big rat. Like you, I will not lose any sleep over this but I am upset that he did not make it as he has earned it. Too bad, I think baseball fans would like him and the zest he has for the game. As for you, have a great time in Hawaii, your contributions will be missed. Enjoy the vacation!

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