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The Best of the Best

The final All Star rosters were announced yesterday, and in addition to the Mets' three starters -- Jose Reyes, David Wright and Carlos Beltran -- Drunky McSleepsalot has elected to bring along Billy Wagner as well. As usual the game has its share of snubs, including John Maine who is arguably having a better season than both Cole Hamels and Ben Sheets, two pitchers selected by LaRussa.

To me, the biggest news is that Barry Bonds was selected by the fans to start at the All Star Game. He is certainly having a good enough season to do so, and would likely have been chosen as a reserve anyway, but it really strikes me as odd that a player who is purported to be so universally despised that he is booed in stadiums leaguewide would receive more all star votes than all but two other National League outfielders.

I happen to love Barry Bonds the player. I don't know Barry Bonds the person, but by almost all accounts his attitude runs the gamut from smug indifference to colossal douchebag. Regardless, personality has never been a prerequisite for baseball greatness, though it certainly plays a major role in baseball fandom. So how did Bonds possibly garner enough votes to be elected as a starter? If the loathing for this man throughout baseball is as widespread as it seems, I don't know how something like this could have possibly happened. Even in his home town of San Francisco the court of public opinion seems to be in a hung jury, so I have a hard time believing that San Franciscans stuffed the ballots on this one.

If so many people hate Barry Bonds because of his countless acts of egregious assholishness and/or they feel that he has tarnished the integrity of the game because of suspicions of rampant PED use, then why don't the voting results bear that out? Have enough people looked past their disdain for the man and the player to reward him for his on-field performance even if they think him a cheater? Are so many people desensitized to the steroid issue at this point that they don't even care any more?