MLB announced Monday night that Coors Field and Colorado were getting the 2021 MLB All-Star Game. Which begs the question- why?
The 2021 MLB All-Star Game is homeless no longer.
Monday night, news broke that the Midsummer Classic was headed to Coors Field and the great state of Colorado. A development which…made a lot of smart people (and one amateur baseball blogger) very wrong.
Plenty of speculation had Milwaukee as a front runner, due to its ties to Hank Aaron. Chicago too, be it in White Sox or Cubs fashion, seemed likely by virtue of being in the middle of the country and not really bothering anyone. Some sites had California just getting to host the game twice, while others suggested repeating what MLB did with the NLCS and World Series and sending it to Texas.
So how did MLB land on Colorado? Three reasons.
First off, time since last hosting. The All-Star Game hasn’t been played at Coors Field this century, with 1998 the one and only time the game was played there. Far too long, with only seven teams having had a longer wait. Cleveland hosted the 1997 All-Star Game, and just hosted the last one in 2019. This might have been a simple matter of MLB working their way down the list.
Secondly, the video game cheat code factor. Because that’s what Coors Field is when it comes to offense. Now that the game is an exhibition again, and now that the league wants to do everything possible to ramp up excitement in the sport and put more balls in play, putting the best hitters in the business under one altitude aided roof makes perfect sense. The 1998 game ended 13-8, and yes, that is the record for runs scored in the All-Star Game. This promises to be just flat out fun to watch, and after all the current buzz around the game, fun is exactly what the doctor ordered.
Finally, about that current buzz. Colorado had the second highest voter turnout in the country, a process aided greatly by being really good at many of the things those Georgia law changes proposed to change or restrict. Mail in voting in particular, as only 6% of the population actually showed up to a polling station. In terms of election laws specifically, it’s hard to get more opposite of Georgia. MLB could have been looking to tacitly acknowledge that. However, in an argument similar to the ones made for Chicago, Colorado is not exactly polarizing either. No feelings are getting hurt here outside of Atlanta…and apparently Arizona.
So at the end of the day, this decision actually makes a lot of sense for MLB. Maybe now attention can return to just getting excited about watching a Coors Field Home Run Derby, and enjoying the best All-Star Game in sports.