That Good Content
Mic-ing up Alek Manoah during the All-Star Game was the first cool thing MLB has done in years
Since Rob Manfred took over as commissioner in 2015, MLB has gotten worse in every conceivable way. One thing he hasn't screwed up, though, is the All-Star game, which is seemingly un-screwup-able.
Of course, the league did ruin one of the best parts of it in 2021, switching from players wearing their own uniforms to the generic trash we saw on Tuesday night. But if you can get over that, the Midsummer Classic is still the Midsummer Classic. All the best players on the same field giving it a solid 90-to-95 percent on a beautiful July evening.
Tuesday night's game, specifically the broadcast, was one of the best in recent memory, which seems much more like a FOX thing than a MLB thing. But we'll give credit to both, as it was surely a joint decision to mic up some of the players while they were playing the game. This is not a new thing, as ESPN has actually done it during real games, usually with outfielders. But on Tuesday night FOX did it with some of the pitchers, and it was one of the coolest things a baseball fan could ever see and hear. Toronto Blue Jays left-hander Alek Manoah was the clear star of the show:
"Three punchies, lessgooo!!" was absolutely outstanding. Again, the beauty of the ASG is seeing all the best players and all the great personalities you don't get to see on a nightly basis following your favorite team, and for FOX to give us an closer look at a personality like Manoah is brilliant. This is how you attract new fans, though mic-ing up pitchers in real live games is not something that's ever going to happen. But for the ASG or spring training, it's a no-brainer.
Also, that compilation left out the best part -- Manoah saying to Smoltz "aw, you're sexy" after Smoltz convinced him to throw a backfoot slider to New York Mets second baseman Jeff McNeil:
So good, specifically the grunting. Tennis has great grunting. Other sports need more grunting. Don''t care how weird that sounds. Here was Manoah after the game talking about being mic'd up:
An overnight star. Rare W for MLB. Now it can resume pissing its fans off every chance it gets.