Too many All-Stars this year? Pshaw! Not enough!

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The dominant All-Star conversation for the past 48 hours or so has been about how there are too many of them. What with all of the substitutions and everything, there are 84 or 85 guys who can count them All-Stars, and that’s an outrage, right?

Maybe not!  Because according to Bill and The Common Man of The Platoon Advantage, historically speaking this may be low:

However, the truth is that that’s not out of line with where the All Star Game has been in the past. After all, there are almost twice as many teams playing today as there were in 1933, when the All Star Game debuted. Rosters are larger, and the changing nature of the bullpen means that more pitchers have been deemed worthy All Stars. We looked on Baseball Reference.com into every All Star Game from 1933-2010, to see exactly how much the term “all star” gets devalued when 84 players are so honored in 2011.

You’ll have to click through for the analysis, but as is always the case, TPA makes it worth your time.

Now: if they can explain how so many All-Stars — if not problematic on the merits of their selection — can possibly make the game halfway decent. Because that’s the real problem here.

But hey, we’re halfway there!

Phillies, Jake Arrieta having a “dialogue”

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No, not like a Socratic dialogue, in which each side, in a mostly cooperative, but intellectually confrontational manner interrogate one another as a means of testing assertions and finding truths, though that would be an AMAZING thing for baseball players and teams to do. Rather, low-level talks about possible interest in Jake Arrieta, baseball free agent.

Arrieta is probably the top free agent still available, now that Yu Darvish, J.D. Martinez and Eric Hosmer have signed. Philly has money — it’s a big market — and could use a pitcher, but Jon Heyman, who, much like Plato did for Socrates, reported the dialogue, says they’re not looking to go long term with anyone.

It may make sense for Arrieta to take a so-called “pillow contract” and come back on the market in a year, but if he’s willing to accept a one-year deal, there are a lot of teams other than Philly who may offer one, and you’d have to figure Arrieta would prefer to pitch for a team more likely to contend.

Dialogues are cool, though. You should go have one over lunch.