The winner of the AL will host the winner of the NL in the World Series. That statement by itself is no big deal. It’s pretty stupid that this was decided by an exhibition game, though. Now, many will say that of the four major sports, home field advantage is least important in baseball. I tend to agree. However, 6 of the last 7 World Series winners were the team with home field advantage for the series, so there’s something to it. Teams, especially those that have been bad for so long, want to play in front of their desperate fanbases.
Let’s get back to the main point, though. In 2002, the MLB so badly wanted better ratings for their All-Star Game that they made the game “matter.” This year, the AL has home field in the WORLD SERIES because of an exhibition game where nearly everyone plays and the starters take 2 at-bats. Most players don’t care much about the game, and that’s fine. It’s the only break during a grueling 162 game schedule, and everyone needs some time to enjoy and relax. But that’s even more reason for the All-Star Game to mean nothing, though. If the players are going to act like it means nothing, it should mean nothing. It baffles me how there haven’t been more complaints over time about a game like this deciding home field. Maybe it’s because only 2 teams are affected by it every year, and only one team is negatively affected. For players on teams like the Braves, Phillies, and Reds, it probably doesn’t mean anything to them if the NL gets home field because they have no chance of going to the World Series. It doesn’t really matter, except for one team that gets hurt while playing for something they worked for all year long.
I haven’t even reached the two dumbest factors of having this game count yet. One dumb reason: every team gets a player. If you really want the game to give the better league home field advantage, don’t let in lesser players just because they’re on lesser teams. Finally, the rule that drives me absolutely nuts, is the fan voting on starters. Fans determine the starters, who play the most of anybody, and therefore have more of an impact on the game than anyone else. If you follow my line of thinking, you’ll agree that fans thus indirectly play a hand in who has home field advantage. As a fan of the Cubs I’m tempted to try start movements to pick bad AL players to vote for in next year’s games so their squad is weakened.
It’s asinine that fans play a hand in home field advantage in the World Series. I don’t have a problem with fan voting in general, but don’t make the game count. I don’t have a problem with every team being represented, but don’t make the game count. I don’t have a problem with players not taking the game seriously, I actually like a meaningless, nonchalant game so they can relax midseason. But please, please, please, MLB, stop determining the World Series game locations based off this game. Just let the World Series team with the better record have home field.