Panel to discuss the All-Star Game, Interleague Play, Donald Fehr, small-market teams and the impact of performance-enhancing drugs on the Hall of Fame
MLB Network to air a special MLB Tonight All-Star Edition on Sunday, July 5
July 2, 2009 – MLB Network will air a special midseason roundtable discussion with Bob Costas, Harold Reynolds, Matt Vasgersian and Tom Verducci on Friday, July 3 at 5:00 p.m. ET covering the All-Star Game, Donald Fehr’s legacy, interleague play, the economics of baseball and the impact of performance enhancing drugs on the game. This is the first roundtable MLB Network has conducted outside of its live, nightly studio show MLB Tonight, which will immediately follow the roundtable at 6:00 p.m. ET and include live look-ins of games in progress, updates, highlights and analysis.
On Sunday, July 5 at 6:00 p.m. ET, MLB Network will air a special MLB Tonight All-Star Edition, simulcast on MLB.com, hosted by Victor Rojas, Dave Valle and Mitch Williams at 6 p.m. (EDT). The hour-long edition will discuss the 2009 All-Star roster, announced earlier in the day on the MLB All-Star Selection Show Presented by Pepsi on TBS at 1:00 p.m. ET, as well as the players on the 2009 All-Star Game Sprint Final Vote ballot for the last spot on each League’s 32-man roster.
Highlights from the roundtable include:
ON THE ALL-STAR GAME’S EFFECT ON WORLD SERIES HOME FIELD ADVANTAGE:
“I’ve always viewed the All-Star Game as an exhibition, whether I was a kid or whether I was a player … To have the stakes of the World Series Game 7 on the line is too much.” – Reynolds
“You say it’s ridiculous that there is something of importance of a World Series home field advantage on the line. I don’t think it’s anymore ridiculous than how it was before. Odd year, American League gets it. Even year, National League gets it.” – Verducci
ON PERFORMANCE-ENHANCING DRUGS AND THE HALL OF FAME:
“There are big name players who put up big numbers. Does Cooperstown still accommodate them?” – Vasgersian
“As baseball writers, we kind of feel like a bunch of St. Peter’s working the pearly gates in terms of having a validation, and that’s what it is – an endorsement on somebody’s career. So I have made the decision that if I know that someone has used steroids or performance-enhancing drugs, I’m not voting for him” – Verducci
“That was like using an aluminum bat instead of a wood bat – there was an advantage … Throughout the history of baseball and other sports, people have always tried to get an edge … But there is a difference between a slingshot and a bazooka.” – Costas
ON SMALL-MARKET TEAMS
“How can the game help the small market teams without whacking the knees of the Red Sox and Yankees?” – Vasgersian
“If your team is not winning, you can’t use money as an excuse, you have to look at the front office” –Verducci