A Post By: Michael Gallo
Last night was the 83rd MLB All-Star Game. I invited a friend who is a lady over (just like Super Tuesday, she will remain anonymous) and started work on a Rolling Rock sixer. I was hoping that the AL could pull of a win so that my Yankees could have home field advantage in the World Series. Unfortunately, I got something a little different. This is a diary of the events that transpired that evening. I wrote this quickly, there WILL be errors. Get over it.
7:02 p.m. CST – Ryan Braun is literally the first thing I see when I turn on the television. This forces me to start the entire night with a bad taste in mouth. Just months ago Ryan Braun was a disgraced baseball player, a man guilty of cheating in such a clean sport that he was to miss half the baseball season. Now, almost overnight, the PED scandal has dissipated and he’s an all-star. This is truly the United States of Second Chances. He is the American Dream. Get caught, rock and roll, carry on. ‘Murica.
7:06 – After announcing a National League lineup full of people I don’t care about, they announce the American League. They start with manager Ron Washington who comes trotting out at a pace generally exhibited by senior citizens. I can’t help but smile; Ron Washington truly looks like the physical embodiment of a crack addict. Ron Washington could be a character on the TV show The Wire. When Hollywood screenwriters write crack addict into their script, they always cross their fingers praying and hoping that they will be able to cast Ron Washington. I also wonder if Josh Hamilton and RON-RON ever go on insane binges in Arlington. I would.
7:26 – After a terrible National Anthem performance (one that consisted mainly of a guy reading off of his hand, and holding the microphone in such a way that I find it highly likely he has spent time in prison), Fox cuts to Chipper Jones in the dugout. Chipper has enough chewing tobacco in his mouth to make three mortal men impotent. All of a sudden some weird, dormant part of my brain sparks and comes back to life. I have an overwhelming craving for chewing tobacco. At this point I have two options: get chewing tobacco, or find heroin. Someone call Ron Washington.
7:29 – Having Chipper Jones on the screen apparently prompted this conversation in the Fox control room:
Director: Chipper? Shit, it’s his last all-star game, do we have anything with him in it?
PA: Yeah, that segment with him and Andrew McCutchen dancing with cats.
Director: Eh, not yet, anything else?
PA: A really bad pre-game speech…
Director: Perfect, run it.
Fox plays a snippet of Chipper Jones giving one of the most uninspired pregame speeches I have ever seen. Ever. And I played on a youth soccer team that went 0-16 over the course of two years. Chipper was monotone, the audience was unresponsive. It seemed like a speech given by an orderly to all the old people in a retirement home.
7:31 – It’s at this point that I realize Verlander is fucking shit up. For whatever reason, he lacks composure, accuracy, and interest. He walks batters and gives up multiple hits to multiple fat Hispanics. Not that that’s a bad thing…
7:36 – God has mercy on the souls of the AL and stops the bleeding. In the top of the first Verlander got spanked harder than a character in 50 Shades of Grey. Good thing the AL has 26 pitchers at their disposal (13 of which are from the Rangers).
7:45 – Royals “fans” chant Billy Butler’s name while Cano bats, proving they don’t get it. At this point, I wonder if they ever will.
7:47 – Josh Hamilton works a 1-1 count. I question his sobriety.
7:50 – Walmart shows a complicated commercial where a Steakhouse agrees to only cook Walmart beef for their customers. This makes no sense to me, as I liken it to a mom-and-pop ice cream parlor allowing Ben and Jerry’s to prove that their ice cream tastes like real ice cream by selling it in their parlor. Yeah, no. After the oblivious customers finish, a Walmart executive comes out from behind a curtain and says, “you just ate Walmart beef!” If this ever happens to me, I’ll promptly stand, pick up my plate and throw it against the wall. Next, I’ll scream “FUCK THIS!” And gag myself until I empty the steak back onto their floor. Don’t fuck with me when I’m eating. If I wanted a Walmart steak I’d start sifting through dumpsters. Shit, why am I so anti-Walmart beef?
7:51 – A Batman commercial comes on. I need new underwear.
8:00 – I think to myself, “wow this game is really flying!” Oh, wait. Two innings in an hour…never mind.
8:03 – A weird commercial with a handful of no-name baseball players prompts me to get on the “Action Team”. I don’t know who they are, or what the Action Team is. That, by definition, is an absolute failure of a commercial.
8:04 – A short Fox segment informs me that Robinson Cano is the “Ambassador of Smiles”. Shit, I had no idea! How could you hate that? How could you find it in your impure, broken heart to boo the Ambassador of Smiles? I hope you have a hard time sleeping at night.
8:05 – Ken Rosenthal looks like a Hobbit wearing a bow tie. Someone get this guy the ring so he’ll get the hell out of here.
8:11 – After a Miller Lite punch tab can commercial, the girl I’m with claims “that would work with any can”. I can’t argue until I try, so I use the point of a knife and drive it into the top of my can. It didn’t work. Can’t be the can, has to be the tool. I switch to a broken fork and drive it into the top of the can. It makes a weird noise and I nearly stab my own hand. I give up.
8:17 – DirecTV shows my favorite commercial on TV right now.
When they come back from commercial, Phil Schifly (sic) is in the stands. PHIL FUCKING SCHIFLY! Do you get this? Despite the fact I was 4 pints deep, I’m blown away by the fact that TV commercials are becoming reality.
8:20 – This score is unreal. 6-0 National League. In interleague play, the National League gets dominated worse than a Taiwanese girl scout troop speaking out against the Chinese government. What the hell is going on?
8:26 – At this point, there has to be a fair amount of embarrassment involved. Evident in Melky Cabrera reaching for Cano’s hand after a homer and getting rejected. Even the Ambassador of Smiles is embarrassed.
8:30 – Matt Kemp is shown in a Fox feature with a mic on that makes him look super gay after he passionately fondles Melky Cabrera’s head. I bet he appreciates this.
8:34 – Ryan Braun makes a catch that suddenly reminds me that every position has an all-star. Whoa…
8:40 David Wright’s face (mostly eyebrows) makes me remember how much I hate the Mets. Those in-debt idiots.
8:43 The game hits the halfway point and maintains its embarrassing score. 8-0 That’s a football score. Wait, hold on…doing some quick research…Oh…okay, definitely not a football score.
8:49 – Bryce Harper goes after a routine pop up and loses it in the sky. After an immature shrug and a visible display of defeat, he lets it drop harmlessly behind him. That’s a clown play, bro.
9:02 – Chipper Jones sneaks a single by someone (Ian Kinlser I think…all the players are rotating per out now). Supposedly the second baseman lost it in a bunch of shirts? I call bullshit. Old-man-MLB conspiracy.
9:11 – Carlos Ruiz is wearing a catcher’s mitt that’s the size of a pizza paddle so he can catch R.A. Dickey’s knuckleball…which all sounds like the plot to a dirty movie.
9:21 – Erin Andrews interviews Derek Jeter. I need new underpants. Again. She calls him “Mr. Jeter”. “Mr. Jeter? That’s my dad.” – DFJ. Damn, he’s smooth.
9:25 – Some lady that I don’t recognize sings God Bless America. It makes me realize I know absolutely nothing about country music.
9:33 – After he pitches, Fox interviews RA Dickey. The interview doesn’t accomplish much. Just like Fox. Or the American League.
9:37 – There’s a hilarious commercial for The Campaign, a movie with Will Ferrell and Zach Galifianakis. Is this it? Is this Will Ferrell’s revival? Lately his film career has looked like the American League in this blowout.
9:42 – Ford’s slogan is “random acts of fusion”. This sounds incredibly dangerous and most likely involves nuclear energy. For some reason, my notes say “Ryan Seacrest = gay”. I don’t think this is a groundbreaking theory.
9:45 – Chipper Jones sounds like he should be on CMT. Or in the Klan.
9:53 – My friend and I get into a heated argument about what it means to be pro-confederacy (after listening to Chipper’s hick accent).
10:16 – With a score like this, this late in the game, Ron Washington is probably starting to wonder where in Westport he can score some crack.
10:19 – Billy Butler strikes out. That should silence the haters. Swings like that don’t belong in the home run derby.
10:20 – I discover on Twitter that Royals “fans” yelled at Cano’s family. The classiness continues.
10:24 – Right before the conclusion of the game, they show National League manager Tony La Russa. He looks like he died 4 years ago. In a post-game interview, he claims he misses the game but not the dugouts…that’s like saying you miss commercial fishing but you don’t like using bathrooms on boats.
10:27 – Awkward interview with MVP Melky Cabrera. Despite the fact that he played on the Yankees for a number of years, I had forgotten how bad his English is. It’s bad. In the spirit of Bill Simmons, we play girlfriend/sister/mother with the two ladies standing next to him. We lose terribly. Mother and grandmother.
All in all, the game sucked. It was hard to watch. But you can file that under “typical All-Star Game”.