We’ve all done it. Admit it. Voting over and over for your favorite player because, despite their stats, they are from your favorite team and deserve to be represented at the All-Star Game.
It’s a tradition. You’ve got to have your team represented in the Mid-Summer Classic in any way possible, no matter who you are booting out in the process.
Think about it…you’ve done it.
Stuffing the ballot box has been a common practice when it comes to the fan voting for the ASG and this year the voting is being dominated by Royals fans. With seven KC players currently in the top positions, plus two more in the hunt, it is looking like the ASG will be an all-blue affair.
Is it right? That depends. Is there anything we can do about it? Nope. And as David Price has put it on Twitter, it might be time for a change in the voting process. You can find the tweet here:
And he is right: the All-Star Game is reserved for the best in baseball. It shouldn’t be just based on popularity. If it was, Derek Jeter would be in this year’s ASG…and that is saying something.
But let’s take a look: The Royals are 33-23 and in first place in the AL Central. They are the AL’s best squad and the only team boasting a better record is the St. Louis Cardinals. The Royals are a championship-caliber team.
Individually? They have some standout players for sure. Eric Hosmer is dominating at first base and at the plate, posting a .301 BA so far this season. Mike Moustakas is batting .319 on the season. Lorenzo Cain never fails to deliver when it comes to top-notch defense.
But there are mistakes too.
The A’s Stephen Vogt is having a stand-out season, with a .291 BA, 11 HR and 41 RBIs, and he is still two million votes behind a catcher of a similar caliber in Salvador Perez.
Kendry Morales leads Nelson Cruz in DH voting…with a .292 average vs. Cruz’s .326 BA and 18 home runs. Cruz is on pace to end the season with 50 homers. Morales only has 7.
Alcides Escobar’s .262 average is two million votes ahead of an extraordinary .329 average by the young Tigers’ phenom Jose Iglesias.
Alex Gordon is batting .256 and Alex Rios has a lackluster.236 BA…and both of them are sitting in the respective 3rd and 4th slots for outfielders over Baltimore’s Adam Jones and the Indians’ Michael Brantley.
But the most disgusting miscarriage of justice? The fact that aging shortstop Omar Infante could potentially be the starting second baseman over Houston’s Jose Altuve. No matter how great Altuve is doing, Infante has a .215 average…and he’s second for shortstops…
Not sure what that says, but if anything, it says that Royals fans may want to reconsider their voting strategies because now they just looking desperate to stack the line-up with Royals.
The mistake with doing that? Remember you are playing for something. It isn’t just a game for fun anymore…they are competing for home field advantage in the World Series. And if Royals fans know anything, they know that stacking a line-up with Royals won’t win them the big game (ahem 2014 World Series ring a bell?).
While constant fan voting is a part of the tradition, it is time to change that so we can be sure that the most deserving players are getting their chance out on the field to help their league when it comes time for October.
The Royals are, without a doubt, an amazing team full of talented players. But there are talented players all across the league that deserve to be starting more. Time to take back our fan voting and show the game of baseball and these exceptional players the respect they deserve.
Vote away…but vote smart.