I hope everyone had a fantastic and safe Fourth of July holiday weekend full of family, friends, parties, food, beer, baseball and of course, fireworks.

Second, let’s talk about All-Star rosters for a minute since they were announced Sunday. I’ve said this before, but I hate how the rosters are selected. I’m a firm believer that the general fan doesn’t know what they are doing and shouldn’t be voting players for this prestigious honor. It turns into more of a popularity contest than who actually performed like an all-star on the field in the first half. With that said, the fans pretty much got it right this year. I can’t complain about the starters they selected. About a month ago it looked like the AL was going to be too stacked toward the Yankees, but it ended up evenly split with two Yankees, two Twins, two Rangers, two Rays and a Mariner.

The second part of the roster selection is by the managers from the previous World Series, and their job is to select the pitchers and round out the roster with deserving reserves and fill in the teams that have zero All-Stars so far. Basically, fix the rosters with deserving players that the fans overlooked. Well this year, Phillies manager Charlie Manuel screwed it up instead of the fans. He decided to allow Atlanta utility man Omar Infante on the All-Star roster. WTF?

Nothing against Infante, but the guy is a bench player. He recorded only 176 plate appearances this season—not even enough to qualify for league leaders. Not that he’s even up for any this summer, hitting a slash line of .309/.341/.376 with one home run, 22 RBI, eight doubles and only nine walks. He’s having a nice season as the Braves utility man who can play all over the infield, but a nice season doesn’t translate to an All-Star season.

I don’t remember seeing a player picked as a reserve who doesn’t even play that often. Was Manual throwing darts at a board or what? Maybe he lost a bet to Bobby Cox or it’s a retirement gift for Cox? I have no idea. And it wasn’t the case where he had to pick someone from the Braves to be on the roster because they already had four All-Stars in Jason Heyward, Tim Hudson, Brian McCann and Martin Prado. Meanwhile, players like Joey Votto, Andrew McCutchen and Carlos Gonzalez are left off the NL roster. I’m completely dumbfounded by this boneheaded decision. Gonzalez and Votto will have a chance to make the team in the final vote, but wow I can’t believe Infante gets one of the spots over either of them.

McCutchen was another young player who deserved to be tabbed an All-Star with a line of .295/.374/.444 with 16 doubles, four triples, seven home runs, 24 RBI, 20 steals and 50 runs scored. He seemed to be hurt by the fact that the Diamondbacks, Astros and Cubs all needed at least one All-Star, so it went to therefore it went to three outfielders: Chris Young, Michael Bourn and Marlon Byrd, respectively. And obviously the NL couldn’t use another outfielder when there’s superman Infante!

Most years it’s the fans I’m angry with, but this year it’s Charlie Manuel. I’m still waiting for one of these years when both the fans and managers get the all-star rosters correct for once. Hey I can dream, right?

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