Wednesday, May 27, 2009

A bit more on "Vote For Manny"

If you think my "Vote For Manny" is actually about wanting Manny to be selected as a starter in the All Star Game, please read on.

If you think my "Vote For Manny" is actually about wanting to embrace the pro-steroids stance, please read on.

If you think my "Vote For Manny" is actually about preventing the most worthy of players, such as Raul Ibanez, from getting selected to the All Star Game, please read on.

If you understood that the "Vote For Manny" is one part satire, one part sarcasm, one part fun, one part grandiose hopes the rules of the game will somehow change to make sense.... feel free to read on even though you already get it.

So what is "Vote For Manny" and why did I create it?

The issues surrounding Manny, the All Star Game, PEDs represents the "perfect storm" for MLB. Now, I am not a Bud Selig basher, but there are things he's done that I am critical of, just as I am complimentary of other things he's credited with. Having Manny, by far the highest profile player to test positive under the current testing rules, coming off his 50 game suspension a week prior to the ASG is unquestionably brutal timing for MLB. Currently, the rules state that a player cannot be part of the ASG if he's suspended and Manny won't be mid-suspension. I am sure they wish Manny isn't among the three highest OF vote-getters in the NL. Maybe that will be the case, maybe not.

The rules are out of whack and sometimes we need to make a travesty of something to enact change. Sometimes you need to do something radical to rally for change.

I do not want to see Manny in the All Star Game. Are we clear on this? I started the "Vote For Manny" site to illustrate the joke that the voting, the "this time it counts"/World Series home field advantage rule, the mandatory representation, the still-soft PED rules...has become. I want to see the best players selected, not the most popular. Ibanez is worthy and will have a spot on the team no matter what; his manager is managing the NL team. Not to worry, Phillies fans.

Here's how I'd change the All Star Game:

  • Make the game an exhibition, like it used to be. Let the fans vote however they wish. If a contingent of fans wish to stuff the ballot boxes for one player, so be it. Each team will have a representative, no matter if they deserve the spot. (So those of you crying that Manny being elected a starter will take a precious spot, cry about the "mandatory representation" rule first.) We can play 9 innings, no extras. If it's a tie, so be it. Each manager will try to get every player in the game. At the end of 9 innings, shake hands and get ready for the 2nd half. No chest-thumping. It's an exhibition.
  • Or make the game count for something (even the stupid WS HFA). But, if you are going to make it count, then first cease the mandatory representation and have the best 32 guys play. Then have a three pronged election for the starters (fans get 1/3, players get 1/3 and managers get 1/3). It's not perfect but it'd be better than what we have.
  • My point is this: You cannot have a game that counts with a selection process that is fit for an exhibition. It's dumb.
  • Also, a new rule: any player dinged for PEDs cannot play in an ASG within the next 12 months of the beginning of their suspension. That covers players who get caught in the 2nd half of a season so they can't be selected in the following ASG.
Let's also dispatch with the "what if Manny IS selected as a top 3 OF?" stuff, shall we? Manny has always come up with a phantom knee injury or some reason to NOT go to the ASG. Why will he start now? Answer, he won't. If Manny is indeed selected as a starter, I am quite certain his agent, Scott Boras, will carefully craft a statement which will politely thank the fans who voted, but Manny needs to focus on helping the Dodgers get to where they want to go in the 2nd half. There is no way Manny steps on the field in St.Louis. None. That means he does not take up any other deserving players' roster spots. Pierre, Ibanez....whoever.

The other, larger, more complicated issue this "Vote For Manny" site highlights is the lack of a deterrent the 50 game suspension actually is. Manny lost some $7m during his suspension, but he's made well north of $200 million over his career. So what has he lost? A shot at the HOF? A bit of pride? Some fans? Do you really think he cares? Really? When Manny is done playing and living on his own island, will he really care? Would YOU? Here's my question: If you were promised $200 million once you were done serving a 1 year jail sentence, would you serve the time? Would you risk the shame and embarrassment for generational wealth? So what's the deterrent to players using PEDs? Entrance into a museum? Or the chance at untold lifetime wealth?

And what about the "Steroid Era"? Given the popularity, the voting results, the resiliency of the game, is anyone really upset anymore? I mean, besides some of the chest-thumping writers and HOF voters? Manny is a cult hero in LA and was one in Boston. ARod's back to bashing HRs in the Bronx and cheered nightly. The game is littered with those implicated with the PED label and each player is cheered when he does something good for their team, booed when they don't. Isn't it crystal clear that the fans are completely sick of hearing, reading, seeing stuff about PEDs in the game? We root for the laundry. I'm no ARod fan, but when the player wearing #13 hits a game winning HR for my team, I am happy.

Speaking of ARod, after some thought, I will not create a similar site for ARod for one simple reason: He did not test positive for PEDs in 2008-09. He admitted to prior usage, whether we choose to believe his story or not. He has not tested positive this season. That's a big difference.

The perfect storm is on the horizon: Manny being elected a starter in the ASG. A vote for Manny is merely a statement to MLB that the rules need to be changed. It's not a vote for Manny, the player. Sure, the LA fans might actually want to see Manny, but that only highlights the point earlier; fans root for the laundry.

I hope this clarifies the reasons for my "Vote For Manny" concept. If you still don't get it or disagree, that's OK with me. I welcome the discussion. I enjoy the debate. Just please keep it civil.

UPDATE: One additional thought which I neglected to mention: If you are an NL fan of a contending team, would you want Manny ON your team to help possibly secure HFA? Forget the PEDs, if you can. If you close your eyes and imagine the top 3 NL OF, is Manny really NOT one of those three? Manny in LF (Braun?), Beltran in CF, Ibanez in RF. Pretty solid.


Anonymous said...

I will admit, that when I first heard this site was up, i thought you were nuts. However, after reading your explination, it is quite interesting the perspective, and kinda funny to see how you want MLB, and more specifically, Bud get embaressed. Although you state you are not a "Bud Basger", I am! I think he has turned his back on the purity of the game only to embrace the dollar sign of it. The best thing that was accomplished under his watch is by far rthe wild card. But there is no doubt in my mind that he did it for the revanue, not that fans. I do agree that an exabition game should not determine home field advantage for the world series. However, if you look at the past ASG winners, and the past World Series winners since this rule has been installed, you will come to the same conclusion I coralation. This rule, in my belief, was put in place by Mr. Selig, not for the fans, but to draw up contraversy and extend the ASG for more revanue via televsion ads. I could go on and on as to why I think Bud Selig single handedly has cause baseball to go from America's past time to America's joke.

I will continue to vote for those who I feel are worthy of the All-star game, including Raul Ibanez, Carlos Beltran, Ryan Braun, and Evan Longoria. I also am a Yankee fan, a die hard who was born late 70's and miss Donnie Baseball in NY more now than ever. But I am more of a baseball fan in geberal then I am a Yankee fan. And I hope that the powers that be do something to get rid of "not My Bud" Selig. Unfortuatly, I know this will never happen, because those powers have a well padded wallet thanks to Bud Selig, and not only does this go to show that teh rich only get richer, but it also goes to show that this is why the economy is in the state it is, just as this is why the state of baseball is the way it is, and forever will be.

I apologize for my bad spelling along the way and encourage feedback not only to my comments, but additionally to this website and it's meaning. If the owner of the website would like to respond to me directly, please do so at

e-5 said...

HIM is proud of you...good work!!!

Anonymous said...

I'll tell you what, I heard about this site and got quite pissed off. After reading your explaination, it's quite an idea. I just finished my ballot, but I couldn't bring myself to vote for him, though.

Anonymous said...

It's not "About the Money, Stupid," "Its About the Stupid Manny."

Thanks for creating the site so I can vote against him. May your children emulate him.

-a Red Sox fan, very tired of his whole act and so happy to see him so far away

Anonymous said...

Even though I kind of agree with your views on the ASG and the dichotomous alternatives you present, at the end of the day, I can't really muster any passion for those views and really can't understand why people get so worked up about the ASG. So in the end, my reaction to this site is, meh.

Anonymous said...

leave him alone... if you guys can handle your frustration for not being baseball star player, why are you waisting your precious time to
bash a person that don't really care about what you've to say?

as in other games... there were a lot of people that we could calls
pro-Michael Jordan and other that do not... so what's your point?
the only guilty here is Bud and only him... my children doesn't go to use that sH!*&t as long as i live cause i take care of it by myself. why Bud didn't do the same?
answer: and only one: business are business...

Rick N said...

Hi Jason-I read about what you started in the Journal News. I was a very good article. I will be voting!

Don said...

The site is a perfect tease to the system. I would suggest, however, that we include in this mess, the role fans play in creating an environment where super-human feats are expected then we turn on the vary people who deliver those feats because they engaged in PEDs, even when the PED may have been legal when they took it. The fans are just a guilty.

Anonymous said...

I like the points that you make. But when I first read about it, I thought it was a pro-Manny site. Maybe you should change it to "Vote For Manny (but not really)". Although maybe saying "Vote For Manny" does draw more people in to check it out in anger. I don't know. But regardless, good points made!

Jay said...

Personally I find the All Star selection process to be a joke. It is a popularity contest and not a selection of the best players of that season. Manny, Ortiz, A-Rod show all be off the voting radar at this time....Roids, .198 Avg and the first six months on the DL, but some how they are all in the thick of things. I will vote daily for Manny, and create additional email address to submit as many as possible just to show how much of a joke this selection process is. Without a job what else do I have to do after the morning search.....

Logan said...

MLB as a whole is a broken system. They created their own monster and have made feeble attempts to correct their mistakes. Deep down, Bud Selig wants to see guys bash 50-60 homeruns because that is what fills seats.

McGwire and Sammy took baseball to new heights. Manny helped bring a championship to Boston. Everybody is assumed to be a cheat now. Lets face it, we don't know what we're watching and who is honest.

JoeOrange31 said...

It is about time that those in the know take a minute to stop and read something worthwhile and compelling and entertaining.

Nice work Jason!

Anonymous said...

mannywood baby, if he does get selected it would be nice to see him hit a game winning hr. im voting him because more than half the players selected couldnt hold his jock strap.

Anonymous said...

Something else to consider is the fact that the ASG 'counts' so home field advantage is a big deal. It actually makes sense for Manny to be elected because despite not playing for 50 games, he is still one of the best in baseball. I hate sitting there and knowing that someone from the Royals or Pirates can determine who gets home field advantage when they won't even sniff the playoffs.

the dude said...

great stuff as per usual

Michael Pust said...

If you really want to expose a hole in the "fans-vote-for-the-ASG-starters-and-the-ASG-counts" fiasco, you should advocate that fans of NL teams vote for the worst possible AL representatives, and vice versa.

For example, I am a Dodger fan. I think they have a shot to go to the World Series this year. I want them to have every advantage I, as a fan, can give them, e.g. home field advantage. So why would I put players like Jason Bay or Evan Longoria on my AL ballot? I'd much rather see the AL All Star team consist of the starting lineup of the Baltimore Orioles.

You should put together a list of the AL worst and NL worst, and convince people to vote for the opposing league to lose.

Anonymous said...

Many es lo que en republica dominicana llamamos sport no una academia militar llema de trampas y envidias como en usa

Joseph said...

I have already voted for Manny 50 times. He will be voted in thanks to your site. And you are absolutely bloody correct...the selection process is a joke. The AL Team as always will be Red Sox, Yankees and Ichiru and the NL Team will be Mets, Cubs and maybe a Brewer or two. May as well have Manny in there. We have had worse selections as starters than a guy suspended for fifty games for failing a steroid test.

Wonderful idea that you came up with!

ceez said...

It doesnt matter if Manny is an All-Star or not and him taking hcr didnt make him the best post season hr hitter of all time. Hes been hittin the ball that way since hes 16 yrs old. Manny is a legendary hitter and very few will come close to his accmplishments in clutch situations.