Just over 3 years ago, at 1:47 in the afternoon on June 5th, 2012, Ryan Howard, influenced either by an ambitious day-drinking undertaking or autocorrect or both, launched the greatest social media All-Star advocacy campaign yet known to man with the following tweet:
Let's get choice to the allstar. Everyone needs to cot for choice. Let's go, let's go let's go. Vote Carlos Ruiz— Ryan Howard (@ryanhoward) June 5, 2012
Chooch/Choice/Carlos Ruiz has not been good this year, so our Phillies-centric All-Star campaign unfortunately will not be as simple as retweeting Ryan Howard every other hour.
With less than one week remaining for fans to vote for All-Star selections--the ballot closes at 11:59 PM next Thursday, July 2nd--we here at The Good Phight are launching our own campaign to get a Phillie into the Midsummer Classic. The player we are promoting is rookie third baseman Maikel Franco. What follows are a run-down of reasons to vote for him, presented in an easily-digestible question-and-answer format.
How do I vote for Maikel Franco?
The official MLB All-Star ballot can be found here. Because Cody Asche began the season as the Phillies starting third baseman, Franco's name does not appear on the ballot. Fortunately, the ballot offers a write-in option equipped with search functionality. A mere two keystrokes--"F-R"--narrows the search to Maikel Franco and Jeff Francoeur. Simply click on Maikel Franco and you will have succeeded in voting for him.
Is Franco truly deserving of my vote?
The NL ballot for third basemen is pretty competitive. As of the latest voting update, the Cardinals' Matt Carpenter leads with 5.5 million votes. He is followed, in order, by Todd Frazier (CIN), Kris Bryant (CHI), and Nolan Arenado (COL). All of those are worthy candidates, to be sure. Upon comparison with Franco, however, none of them emerges as obviously superior:
What this shows is, at the very least, Franco deserves to be mentioned as a candidate along with these other four players. Voting for him would certainly not constitute an unethical act.
If Franco is, at best, on par with the other candidates, why should I go out of my way to write him in?
If Royals fans have shown us anything this season, it is that All Star voting need not be an objective process. On the strength of their mindless homerism, Omar Infante leads Jose Altuve, Ian Kinsler, and Jason Kipnis in votes for second basemen and Mike Moustakas leads Josh Donaldson at third base. Certainly Franco is more deserving of an All-Star nomination relative to his competition than Moustakas and Infante.
Should I vote for him?
Yes, absolutely! As we've seen, he is a reasonable choice. Moreover, homerism is accepted--encouraged, even--in All Star voting. When we get right down to it, voting for Maikel Franco is your duty as a Phillies fan.
How many times can I vote for Maikel Franco?
Unlike the American voting system, MLB does not enforce a one man, one vote policy. Fans are able to vote 35 times per email address. If you want to see Maikel Franco as an All Star, it is your right, no, your duty, to vote 35 times from each email address in your name. While certainly not your duty, we here at The Good Phight would not cast aspersions in your direction if you were to create additional email addresses or appropriate the email addresses of your non-baseball-fan friends to vote for Franco 70 or 105 or even 140 times.
Is it ethical to vote that much?
Yeah. Why not? We're talking about baseball here, not who will be president. Baseball is fun and seeing players from your favorite team in the All Star game is fun. Therefore, according to rock-solid logistical principles, seeing your favorite players in the All Star game is baseball. Voting 100+ times for Maikel Franco is baseball. If you like baseball and Maikel Franco is a player on your favorite team--he should be if you're reading this--it is EXTREMELY ETHICAL to write him in on the All Star ballot as many times as you can.
What is at stake?
Remember 2003 when Randy Wolf was the only Phillies All Star? How about Mike Lieberthal in 2000? Maybe Ricky Bottalico in 1996 rings a bell? If you don't vote for Franco and get him elected as a starter, Jeanmar Gomez could well be the Phillies' lone representative. You don't want that do you? I thought not. #WriteInFranco.
When should I vote?
Now, or, failing that, soon. Voting ends next Thursday, July 2nd at 11:59 PM EST.
I'm lazy and don't want to scroll up for the link to the ballot. Can you provide that link again?
Of course! You can find the All-Star ballot here.
Remember, Maikel Franco is a third baseman. He plays Third Base. Remember, also, that you have to #WriteInFranco, which can be done by clicking on "Write in Vote >" which is located at the bottom of the Third Base section below the hated face of David Wright. Once you click on that, a search bar appears where "Write in Vote >" once was. Simply type "fr" and click on "Franco, Maikel - PHI". Make sure not to click on "Francoeur, Jeff - PHI". You don't want to vote for him. You want Franco.
You can vote for players at other positions if you want, but you don't have to. Just #WriteInFranco and be done with it if you're pressed for time. Only, do that at least 35 times. It is your duty as a Phillies fan.