Maybe I am an old fuddy-duddy (okay, if you use the phrase “fuddy-duddy” there is no question that you are old) but I think the orchestrated voting for the All-Star game is an embarrassment to the game. It is simply awful that MLB.com team sites and team broadcasts encourage fans to vote for laundry (the players in their uniforms) and not the best players to be All-Stars. Add to that the fact that each person has 25 votes and that voting has been taking place since the first weeks of the season and you have a major league mess.
Every team site has an ad encouraging fans to vote for the players who wear their uniforms. Sites often also include articles that start like this: “If D-backs fans are going to get Justin Upton to the All-Star Game, they are going to have to fire up their computers.” Or with headlines likes this: “Calling on fans to fill ballot box for Butler, Guillen
With voting for the All-Star Game set to close at 10:59 CT on Thursday night, fans can vote up to 25 times online exclusively for Royals standouts Billy Butler and Jose Guillen.”
It is simply embarrassing to all involved.
Here are my selections by position for each league. I apologize for doing some research on my picks.
Justin Morneau leads the balloting here on the basis of his .350 batting avg. and his league leading OPS but Miguel Cabrera is in third place. Cabrera leads the majors in RBI, tied for the lead in homers, and is hitting .335. What’s a senor got to do to get some love?
My vote: Miguel Cabrera
Stop voting for: Mark Teixeira in second place in the voting and is hitting .229.
Okay, so you know I’ve admitted my man-crush on Dustin Pedroia so I clearly have no trouble with him being in second place in the voting. However, Robinson Cano is the first-half AL MVP and leads the league in hitting and is tied for second in total bases.
My vote: Robinson Cano
Stop voting for: Ian Kinsler in third place in the voting and is not having as good a season as Cano or Pedroia.
I really like a number of AL third basemen and you can’t go wrong in voting for Alex Rodriguez, Michael Young or Evan Longoria. There is no question in my mind that Longoria is the next Jeter as the face of the game, and while Longoria is hitting .297 with 12 homers, 52 RBI and is great in the field, Adrian Beltre is hitting .340 with 12 homers, 52 RBI and is great in the field and is the first-half MVP for the Red Sox.
My vote: Adrian Beltre
Stop voting for: Brandon Inge in fifth place in the voting and does not deserve any votes compared to the top four.
Sometimes the old favorite is the right choice. Derek Jeter is not having his best season, but he’s having the better season of any AL shortstop. He leads the voting comfortably over Elvis Andrus who is vote-worthy.
My vote: Derek Jeter
Stop voting for: J.J. Hardy who is in third place and is hitting .217.
Joe Mauer is “only” hitting .300 this season with just three homers; that’s okay, I won’t kick him out from behind the plate. He leads the world in voting over Jorge Posada and Victor Martinez, who is having a better season than Posada, but not by much.
My vote: Joe Mauer
Stop voting for: Taylor Teagarden who has over a half a million votes and was 1-for-27 on the season before he and his .037 batting average were sent to the minors. His minor-league numbers are not even All-Star worthy as he hit .263 for Frisco and .071 for Oklahoma City. If you want to show how foolish the All-Star voting is, Teagarden should get your vote. If you want the best ballplayers, Teagarden should be designated for assignment.
I love the season that Vladimir Guerrero is having and he deserves to lead in the voting. Neither Hideki Matsui nor David Ortiz who are following Vlad in the voting are deserving to be on the All-Star team.
My vote: Vladimir Guerrero
Stop voting for: Ken Griffey, Jr. who is still in fourth place and was hitting .184 when he retired which was embarrassing enough. Voting for him now does not pay tribute to him, it only magnifies his final numbers.
The top three vote getters right now are Ichiro, Josh Hamilton and Carl Crawford. All three are having excellent seasons. Nick Swisher is in fifth place because of early voting. Curtis Granderson is in sixth place because he is a Yankee. Brett Gardner is in seventh place, another Yankee who is actually having a good season. Torii Hunter is a very recognizable name in eighth place.
My votes: Josh Hamilton, Magglio Ordonez who is hitting .319, 10, 49, and Brennan Boesch the Tigers rookie who is hitting .335, 12, 45.
Stop voting for: B.J. Upton who is in 10th place and is hitting .223 and is not hustling. I think if he were voted on to the team, Longoria would opt out.
Check this out: Albert Pujols is hitting .305 with 16 homers and 52 RBI. Joey Votto is hitting .312 with 16 homers and 51 RBI. Adrian Gonzalez is hitting .306 with 16 homers and 50 RBI. All three are All-Stars.
My vote: Albert Pujols
Stop voting for: Prince Fielder who is hitting .256 and is third behind Ryan Howard in the voting. Out of curiosity, how does Fielder only have 32 RBI with 15 homers?
Chase Utley leads in voting hitting .277. Martin Prado leads the NL in hitting at .331 and is second in the voting. What is wrong with this picture?
My vote: Martin Prado
Stop voting for: Chase Utley. If you don’t want Prado, go for Brandon Phillips.
Placido Polanco deserves to be on the All-Star team; after all he is hitting .318 and looks great in the field. He leads right now in the balloting.
My vote: David Wright who is hitting .303 and leads the NL with 61 RBI.
Stop voting for: Chipper Jones who is hitting .257 and is not worthy of being on the team this year.
Hanley Ramirez leads the voting and is hitting .295. Jimmy Rollins is second in the voting and has missed a lot of games this season. Since he has come back from his injuries, Jose Reyes has led the Mets to a revival.
My vote: Troy Tulowitzki hitting .306 and is having a great season although he is now injured.
Stop voting for: Orlando Cabrera hitting just .247.
Yadier Molina has been leading the voting despite his .240 batting average. Fans think catching and they think Molina. Brian McCann is in second in the voting and is hitting .264. Catcher is not a great position in the NL.
My vote: Miguel Olivo of the Rockies who is hitting .303 with 11 homers. Runner up is Ronny Paulino, hitting .305. Ivan Rodriguez deserves some love at .303, but only one homer. He has done a great job with the young staff of the Nats.
Stop voting for: Yadier Molina
Right now the leaders are Ryan Braun, Jason Heyward, and Andre Ethier. They are followed by Jayson Werth, Shane Victorino, and Matt Holliday.
My votes: Ryan Braun, Andre Ethier, and Marlon Byrd and his .311 average.
Stop voting for: Matt Kemp hitting .258 and dogging it for the Dodgers.
There you go. Now head to MLB.com and vote.
One more thing: Don’t watch the HR Derby.