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The Stars Are Ours This Week

Perhaps I need to be more cynical [1], but I’m genuinely excited that All-Star Week is upon us and around us. Is it called All-Star Week? I can’t believe it’s not. I assume it’s trademarked and MLB is cashing in on it.

MLB will be cashing in off me in two scoops when I visit FanFest twice. I know what I’m in for in terms of temptation thanks to the dry run of 2008 [2]. Even for an All-Star Week that wasn’t properly Mets-themed, that one was pretty exciting to have around.

How ya like this apple? [3]

How ya like this apple?

I’m in for FanFest [4]. I’m in for examining apples [5] should I wander across them. I’m down for most whatever’s televised. Not totally down for the ancillary stuff Sunday and Monday, but I’ll tune in. Didn’t succumb to the “strips” when I finally drew a chance to buy in for SRO access. I can sit at home for less. But you never know.

I’m letting the evanescent controversies wash over me, because a week from now they’ll be stored away. Should  David Wright have picked Michael Cuddyer for the Home Run Derby? Of course not [6]…unless he really wanted to. Should Matt Harvey be rested in deference to a blister [7] that just happens to coincide with his opportunity to start the first All-Star Game the Mets have hosted in 49 years? Yes! No! Maybe! Whatever!

It’s all pretty silly, just like the concept that This One Counts or that Everybody Must Play or that Nobody Cares Anymore. The first All-Star Game, in 1933, was tied into the Chicago World’s Fair. Our first All-Star Game, in 1964, was played adjacent to the Flushing World’s Fair. Come see the greatest baseball players on Earth! It’s a cute, quaint concept, like picture telephones and Belgian waffles. They have the former now. Perhaps they continue to have the latter, even if you have to concoct them yourself [8]. And we still have the All-Star Game. It’s cute, quaint and I still care as long as they care enough to dust the middle of the season with stellar powdered sugar. I mean why not? It’s just one night in July, except for us in Metsopotamia it’s a week more or less. It’s baseball all around us, colored orange and blue. It’s pretty sweet.

And what I’m really enjoying about this All-Star business, as a charter member of the Mets Fans Who Like To Read club, is the plethora of feelgood articles it has spawned. Say, you’re a Mets fan who likes to read, aren’t ya? Well, in that case, I recommend the following.

A visit with Ron Hunt [9], from Anthony McCarron in the News.

Great news regarding first-pitch pitcher Tom Seaver [10], via Bill Madden in the News.

Darryl Strawberry’s new path [11], marked by USA Today’s Bob Nightengale.

Willie Mays’s way [12], courtesy of Christian Red in the News — complete with long overdue street signs [13].

Johnny Callison’s moment in the Shea sun [14] (and his unlikely role in the 1969 World Series), captured by ESPN’s Steve Wulf.

The forgotten All-Star Game at the Polo Grounds [15], from after the Mets left but before Shea opened, remembered by the News’s Robert Dominguez.

And if you haven’t picked one up yet, grab a copy of the 2013 All-Star Game Program [16], chock full of Amazin’ Mets content (including an article on Mets captains through the years in which author Jon Schwartz quotes yours truly among several others).

When you’re done reading, check out the Bergino Baseball Clubhouse for a truly extravagant All-Star Extravaganza [17] Saturday between 11 AM and 4 PM.