For the 17th consecutive year, All-Star Week will include a Town Hall Meeting with the Commissioner of Baseball, broadcast exclusively on MLB.com. It's an event that has long been a highlight of the MLB All-Star FanFest, and fans are encouraged to interact with Commissioner Rob Manfred next week, both online
For the 17th consecutive year, All-Star Week will include a Town Hall Meeting with the Commissioner of Baseball, broadcast exclusively on MLB.com. It's an event that has long been a highlight of the MLB All-Star FanFest, and fans are encouraged to interact with Commissioner Rob Manfred next week, both online and in person.
Moderated by Marlins broadcaster Rich Waltz, the Town Hall Meeting will be held at MLB FanFest at the Miami Beach Convention Center today at 2 p.m. ET.
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Manfred, who will be participating for the third time, will make brief opening remarks and then answer e-mailed questions as well as those from fans in attendance. Fans may submit their questions for the Commissioner now to firstname.lastname@example.org.
A live video stream of the interactive chat session with baseball fans will be available on MLB.com and the MLB.com At Bat 17 mobile app. A transcript of the dialogue, as well as an archived replay of the chat, also will be available across all MLB digital platforms.
Last year's address, held at FanFest at the San Diego Convention Center, covered a wide range of current events, including possible tweaks to the instant replay challenge system, expansion to the home-plate collision rules and how to give a proper sendoff to legendary Dodgers broadcaster Vin Scully, who retired a couple of months later at the conclusion of the 2016 season.
The 2017 season has been intriguing in its own right, given how many teams are in realistic contention for either a division title or a Wild Card berth. Seven teams were within five games of the second American League Wild Card spot, as of Thursday. In the National League, a few unexpected teams -- namely, Colorado, Arizona and Milwaukee -- have emerged as contenders as the first half of the season comes to a close.
The continuing emergence of young superstars, in addition to Manfred's ongoing efforts to further globalize the game, are other intriguing storylines of 2017. A total of 24 All-Stars are making their first trip to the Midsummer Classic this year, and 30 players are age 27 or younger. Additionally, 21 foreign-born players are All-Stars, including players from the Dominican Republic (9), Venezuela (4), Puerto Rico (3), Curaҫao (2), Canada (1), Cuba (1) and Japan (1).
The Town Hall Meeting will be one of many events being held at FanFest in Miami. FanFest, which opens on Friday and runs through Tuesday is the world's premiere interactive baseball theme park. Throughout the show floor, fans will have the opportunity to meet and interact with some of their favorite players across MLB. FanFest will feature more than 40 interactive exhibits and attractions, including clinics taught by current and former MLB players, free autograph sessions with Marlins legends and Hall of Famers, National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum exhibits and much more.
MLB All-Star FanFest attractions are included in the price of admission, and the only additional costs are for concessions and memorabilia. Specially-priced $13 tickets for All-Star FanFest can be purchased online only at the www.allstargame.com/mvpoffer.
On Tuesday at 7:30 p.m. ET, tune in to the 2017 All-Star Game presented by Mastercard live on FOX, and during the game visit MLB.com to submit your choice for the Ted Williams Most Valuable Player Award presented by Chevrolet via the 2017 MLB All-Star Game MVP Vote. The 88th All-Star Game, in Miami, will be televised nationally by FOX, in Canada by Rogers Sportsnet and RDS, and worldwide by partners in more than 160 countries via MLB International's independent feed. ESPN Radio and ESPN Radio Deportes will provide national radio coverage of the All-Star Game. MLB.com, MLB Network and SiriusXM will also provide comprehensive All-Star Week coverage. For more information, please visit allstargame.com.
Alyson Footer is a national correspondent for MLB.com. Follow her on Twitter @alysonfooter.