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Should all teams be represented in the All-Star Game?

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2017 Major League Baseball All-Star Game

Welcome to SB Nation FanPulse, a survey of fans across MLB. Each week, we send 30 polls to plugged in fans from each team. Red Sox fans, sign up HERE to join FanPulse.

Normally, these Fanpulse posts focus on how Red Sox fans are currently feeling about the team. That will still be covered here, but it is going to be secondary today. Part of that is that there is simply only so much you can say about about this on a weekly basis, even for a team like the Red Sox that has been so up and down. A bigger part is that I am super late on the results this week. This week is a very busy one for me at a my day job and I just straight-up missed the email showing me the results. My bad. Anyway, we’re going to start with the national question this time around, as it is a bit more timely.

Should all teams be represented in the All-Star Game?

It feels like this is a question that is debated every year, but I still find it to be a fascinating question. The results here show that people are fairly divided on this one too, but I agree with the slight majority here. Granted, it’s not too hard to see the other side of this. The Orioles are represented by John Means (though Trey Mancini has put up actual All-Star production) and the Marlins have Sandy Alcantara in the game. Those aren’t All-Star players. Furthermore, having to squeeze unworthy players onto the roster leads to more snubs than should be necessary.

All of that said, it’s an All-Star game. There are real-world effects from deserving players not making the roster thanks to archaic arbitration arguments and contract bonuses, but ultimately it’s an exhibition game built to please fans. Specifically, it is at least ostensibly used to build the game. In other words, it’s not really about us. The diehards aren’t really a factor in decisions like this. It’s the casual fans on the fence about becoming diehards. When I was a kid, for example, I loved watching the intros to see the Red Sox players. I wanted to see if they’d do something weird when the camera panned over them and I wanted to hear how the crowd reacted to my hometown player. That was legitimately possible (probable, even) that I am weird, but I certainly would not have enjoyed the All-Star games as much without a player from my favorite team on the roster. Not many people will be psyched about seeing Means or Alcantara in this game, but fans of the Orioles and Marlins will. They deserve to enjoy this game, too.

Confidence Tanked after London Series

Like I said, I was late to this part of the results, so things might be different now. The Red Sox have won four of their last five games, though it hasn’t really been pretty against bad competition. This poll was taken immediately after the disastrous London Series, though. As you can imagine, the results were abysmal. Only 27 percent of fans were confident in the team, the lowest mark of the year by a significant margin and tied for the third-lowest confidence rating in the league. Alex Cora wasn’t immune to the fall, either. He’s generally stayed steady in his confidence rating even while the team’s has fallen, but that changed this week. His rating fell to a season-low 58 percent, the fifth-worst rating in baseball.