Each Thursday preceding Brewers weekend home stands, Tyler Maas will help prepare fans for all elements of the upcoming series with the Homestander. Tyler prints Wisconsin-themed shirts at Forward Fabrics and contributes to such fine publications as Milwaukee Magazine and The A.V. Club Milwaukee. All views, naughty words and weirdo sentiments are his own. Follow him at @TylerJamesMaas.
The All-Star Game is pointless. It's not only worthless, it's actually detrimental, in my opinion. I detailed it in a column a few years ago, but essentially:
• Putting the fate of the classification of "All-Star" (that once carried such importance and pride with it) in the hands of people voting 35 times apiece with each of their email addresses leads to the game being a popularity contest instead of an acknowledgement of accomplishment. Carlos Gomez and Jean Segura totally deserved to be there. Others, not so much.
• Having the game in the middle of the season is flawed, as the All-Star classification stays with a player, even after his average dips below .250 come September. By this logic, John Buck arguably deserved to be an All-Star this season.
• Between increased worries about pitch counts, innings limits and injury concerns (mixed with players opting not to go) and Last Chance polls, more players than ever are appearing in the mid-summer classic. Everyone is an All-Star, which makes a contest once populated with only the best the game had to offer into a pedestrian affair.
• Fans shouldn't want players on their favorite team to become All-Stars because earning an All-Star nod can (AND IS) used by agents in contract negotiations. Fans who are voting in droves to see their favorite players represent their team in the ASG are unwittingly making that player more expensive to re-sign and risking his departure once his deal is up.
While most of you were watching the All-Star Game, I was getting shithoused on a blanket at a public park and watching weirdo stoners hulu hoop while Painted Caves played nearby. I regret nothing. Spring Break 4 Evaaaaaaa!!!
MicroBrew - Minor Leaguer Of The Week
Hunstville Stars player Chadwin Stang possesses that all-too rare skill of being a light-hitting outfielder while having the name of the hot female lead's jock boyfriend in a poorly-written script of an '80s boner comedy.
Blatz from the Pabst - Old School Brewer
What has 9.5 fingers and 267 career saves? Bob Wickman. That's who. Bonus: He's bald, overweight and was born in Wisconsin. He's on the fast track for governor's seat, assuming Jim Gantner doesn't run.
Handy Heckle - Marlins
Assuming you see a Marlins fan at Miller Park this weekend (parking his unicorn in the general admission lot perhaps?), you can totally zing them by reminding them Miami is one of the few teams with a worse record than Milwaukee.
Plus, until they're traded in a few days, the team employs Placido Polanco (biggest forehead in MLB) and tiny-headed slap singles hitter Juan Pierre. Together, they combine for two average-sized craniums.
Tailgating Tips - What to put inside you, etc.
To eat: Have we done burgers yet? I don't think so. Take down a burger for once. No matter if it's beef, turkey or black bean, they're all good. Take it up a notch with pepper jack cheese, jalapeno slices and some buffalo sauce.
To drink: It's too goddamn hot for some heavy craft beer. Instead, reach for some cool, refreshing vodka Robinades. More specifically, vodka Robin-Limeade. The 100% natural, 100% rockin' and 12% juice citrus sugar slurry totally masks any hint of vodka, which is equal parts dangerous and delicious.
Tailgating Tunes - Wisconsin music recommendation
Milwaukee's own Whips is brand new band built from pieces of other great local acts including Call Me Lightning, Hot Coffin and still one of my personal favorites, Red Knife Lottery. Whips plays its first show at Cactus Club in support of And You Will Know Us By The Trail Of Dead. Not a bad way to start.
If you can't make it to Miller Park - Watch the game here
Ryan Braun's Graffito (102 N. Water St., Milwaukee). If that name doesn't ring a bell, Ryan Braun used to play baseball games for the Milwaukee Brewers baseball club. I wish I could be a fly on the wall of the forced-ass interaction between Braunie and the Kwik Trip contest winner.
"This restaurant is pretty nice. I don't know why I've waited so many years to try this place!" - Ryan Braun.
I went to Graffito twice and actually liked the food both times. And for a place built to trap Brewers jersey-wearing people who are hoping to see Ryan Braun eating pasta at his own restaurant, it's not all that expensive. Parking in the Third Ward is a nightmare. Youre better off just walking. It doesn't matter where you live. Just walk.
Ad-monishment - Shaming commercials that deserve it
This isn't really focusing on one ad, but something that's bothered me for a long time. For as long as I can remember, I've seen logos for BBQ restaurants, labels on ham and sausage packages and things of that variety that depict a smiling pig--oftentimes wearing a chef's hat--doing things like holding a butcher's knife and a rack of ribs or, like, a wheelbarrow full of meat or pork cracklings. Is the pig aloof to its own terrible fate? Is it fully aware of it and just cool with its impending demise and fine with all its fellow pigs being killed and consumed.
I'm not going to stop eating pork products over it. It just baffles me.
@C_Gomez is the Twitter account of Brewers great Carlos Gomez. It proves that even someone like Carlos Gomez can't do everything well.
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