It might not be the Voice of God making the opening call (it will likely be Jim Hall, his long time understudy and virtual sound-alike), but there seems to be some groundswell to have the Yanks closer, Mo Rivera, start the All Star Game on Tuesday night as a tribute to his success.
I first thought it was a hairbrained idea --maybe it still is-- but I am warming to it. I didn't discuss it yesterday when I first heard about it, but after giving it some time to marinate, I think it would be great.
Unorthodox? You betchya, but with Tito Francona selecting 6 relief pitchers, who cares about convention. Of course, it'd have to be Tito's "call" to honor a Yankee in Yankee Stadium. It would be a magnanamous move. I like Klapish's take:
...the real way to commemorate Yankee Stadium in what could be its final marquee event is to let Rivera start the game: Allow him to bask in the thunderous standing ovation, and let him know what it feels like to have a million flashbulbs go off in his face upon delivery of that first cut fastball.I say: DO IT! I'm all for the wild, crazy, great moments in sports. Let's see it happen!
Unconventional? It's almost surreal. But Rivera himself says, "I'm sure the fans would love it. They'd go crazy."
The theory behind this heresy goes like this: The 2008 All-Star Game isn't your typical Midsummer Classic. The very reason it's being staged in the Bronx is to bid an official farewell to Yankee Stadium, which is being replaced by a new structure in 2009.