Two Mormons in Baseball’s 2011 All-Star Game

July 11, 2011 | 8 comments
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0-Roy-HalladayWhile 13 Mormons are among the 750 active players on Major League Baseball rosters at this point, just two (of 68 players) are on the rosters for tomorrow’s All-Star game. And with one player in each league, there is no clear team to root for in tomorrow’s game.

Baseball fans are likely first to see Phillies ace Roy Halladay first, representing the National League. Halladay (11-3, 2.45 ERA, #8 in the majors) is coming off an outstanding season last year in which he pitched two no-hitters, one of which was a perfect game. This year his statistics have been just as good, with Halladay suffering just one bad outing, on April 19th when he gave up 6 runs to the Brewers in a loss. His performance is a large part of why the Phillies once again hold the best record in major league baseball.

American League fans will have to hope that Boston’s Jacoby Ellsbury, who is on the team’s reserve list, will make an appearance. Since the teams tend to cycle through most of their reserves during the All-Star game, an appearance by Ellsbury is possible. Unlike with the pitchers, position players make the team by popular vote from the fans, and Ellsbury faced stiff competition in the outfield from José Bautista, Curtis Granderson and Josh Hamilton, who won the vote and were named starters. Ellsbury’s performance this year is still stellar, and he goes into the All-Star break hitting .316 (#10 in the majors) and without a fielding error so far this year.

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8 Responses to Two Mormons in Baseball’s 2011 All-Star Game

  1. Ray on July 11, 2011 at 6:55 pm

    So the percent of Mormons making the All-Star game is higher than the percent of Mormons in MLB overall. Cool. (Sorry, I can’t shut off my automatic number crunching gene.)

  2. Kent Larsen on July 11, 2011 at 7:10 pm

    Seems like it. But I think it may depend a bit on how you measure. Both Halladay and Jacoby are inactive, so should they be counted? And the number of players in MLB depends a lot on when you count (40 man roster or 25 man roster?) and who you count (those on the DL? those temporarily up from the minors?)

    But it does look like the representation at the All-Star game is higher.

  3. Bob on July 11, 2011 at 10:04 pm

    Kent: Be sure to post if the Mormons have the worst batting %.

  4. Jim Donaldson on July 11, 2011 at 11:02 pm

    Don’t they call this the fallacy of small samples?

  5. gst on July 12, 2011 at 11:52 am

    I’m sure that Halladay and Jacoby value their Mormon heritage, but find value in all faiths, and drink alcohol only as required by diplomatic protocol.

  6. Scott Armstrong on July 12, 2011 at 12:35 pm

    Thanks Kent. This reminds me of my dad, a man with an uncanny knowledge of celebrity Mormons. It baffled me as a kid, but he was always pointing out athletes and entertainers as members or rumored members (he somehow seemed to know their activity levels too). Thanks to Times and Seasons I can carry on the tradition.

  7. Kent Larsen on July 12, 2011 at 11:28 pm

    Scott, you’re welcome. I truly enjoy doing this, even though, I admit, it really doesn’t matter much — no more than sports do.

    For fans, sports are all about affiliation. Its about making connections with your team or player. Looking at which players are Mormon is just a non-traditional way of making that connection.

    BTW, Halladay did very well, starting the game for the National League, pitching 2 innings of perfect ball.

    But, Ellsbury didn’t do as well. He came to bat twice, and struck out both times.

  8. David on July 14, 2011 at 6:43 am

    Not sure of the right answer here. Is it appropriate to label someone inactive in a public forum? And for that matter, is it right to give someones Church membership in a public forum?

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