|photo courtesy of mlb.com|
Michael's first, last, and only appearance so far in an MLB All Star Game occurred in 2014 when he was selected to the American League team as a reserve player. he was not chosen to be part of the 2015 contest, and of course we all know that the 2016 ASG ended up being out of the question for him. (though i did push hard for fans to vote for Michael prior to his shoulder setback!) but with his injury issues finally out of the way, we need to get Dr. Smooth on the squad representing the Cleveland Indians this year.
after his first month of the regular season, Michael is currently batting
.308 (24-for-78) with nine extra base hits, including four doubles and five home runs, in 20 games. he also has 17 RBI, 13 runs, six walks, a team high three stolen bases, and 43 total bases. many of his stats rank in the Top 10 among American League left fielders as well. (read my latest Brantley's April 2017 #s blog for more details on his triumphant return and incentive to vote for him!)
that is all quite impressive for a guy who has not played a full season in the majors since 2015. i can even argue that he's still in the process of completely finding himself at the plate again and so as the season progresses, he's only going to continue to do better. therefore, as he maintains his reputation as one of the best hitters on the Tribe and in the league, he has a very strong case to be named as an All Star. and i believe it is the fans' obligation to now do their part and help him nab that honor.
naturally, if you want to vote for any other Indians players, please do! i am not against having the 2016 AL Champions well represented on the AL All Star team, especially considering manager Terry Francona is the skipper! in fact, i think there are several Tribesmen who would be great candidates this year, so vote Tribe all across the board if you like. i just want to make sure that Michael does not get left out or forgotten, because that's what i always do as his #1 fan. i can't bear the thought of Michael potentially boasting some of the highest stats on the team come June and July, and then seeing fans up-in-arms that he isn't going to the All Star Game. that would be awful. so it's imperative that people vote early, vote often, and vote as much as you can. let's send Dr. Smooth back to the Midsummer Classic!
|photo courtesy of indians.com|
HOW TO VOTE
the voting methods have changed slightly from the past. you can still vote online, but the text messaging option is no longer available. to vote online using the exclusive All Star ballot via your computer, tablet, or smartphone, you need a valid email address. you're allowed 35 votes per email address, but, as was initially put into effect last year, you can only cast 5 votes per 24 hours. that means you will need to continually vote every day for a full week to use all your votes.
but wait! think you can only vote 35 times? think again! how many of you have more than one email address? more than two? if you have a gmail account, a yahoo, an old hotmail, a school email, even a personal work email address, etc., then go ahead and utilize those to vote more! after you've reached your maximum 5 votes with one email for the day, simply fill out a new ballot and enter another email address to submit 5 more sets of votes. and if you are choosing to vote with multiple email accounts, just remember to vote 35 times with each address!
(yes, i have caught flak before when bringing this to people's attention, but i don't understand why because i know i am not alone in doing it. and if i'm able to do it, then i'm going to inform others about how they can, too, if they do so desire.😛)
your other choice is to vote via the MLB.com At Bat app or Ballpark mobile app. for that, you must use your smartphone or tablet to download/log into the app, which will then give you access to the official ballot. the same voting rules--5 votes a day per email--apply.
voting is open from today up until June 29 at 11:59 pm ET. for whatever reason, they delayed the ASG voting this year by a week. (usually fans can begin submitting their ballots during the last week of April.) nonetheless, almost two full months remain to get all your votes in, so get started now!
TO VOTE ONLINE FOR MICHAEL FOR THE 2017 AMERICAN LEAGUE ALL STAR TEAM, CLICK HERE.
you can also select "Español" in the upper left corner of the page to translate the ballot into Spanish.
next i'm gonna hit you with some hard truths. when i was voting on my computer for the 2016 All Stars, i discovered different things that were transpiring with the voting process as time went by. i can't say for sure that these will all happen again this year, but i'd like to at least notify everyone of what they may want to be on the lookout for.
1. in 2016, despite the rule that you could not vote more than 5 times in a 24 hour time period, i did do this on occasion accidentally. and the strange part was, those extra votes were still going through even though the 24 hour time limit hadn't been expired yet. however, my excess votes weren't really counting and it took me a few days to realize this. so learn from my mistake and wait a full day before you proceed to vote with your email address again. for example, if you vote one day at 5:00 pm, wait until ~5:02 pm the following day to cast your next set of 5 votes. typically, you should receive a pop up verifying that you have voted 5 times for the day, as well as a confirmation email every day after you have fulfilled your 5 vote quota. those can be regarded as reassurance that your votes did count.
2. after voting had been open last year for over 7 weeks, a pop up notification began to appear on computers after casting the final 5 votes with your email address. it read: "congratulations! you have voted 35 times from this email address." since voting just started, i don't know if that pop up will be in existence right from the jump this year, or later on down the road, or not at all. so bear that in mind, and if you don't see this, it doesn't necessarily mean that you didn't vote 35 times.
3. this one is for the people who are going to vote with more than one email address. originally last year, you could vote with multiple emails in one day using the same web browser. but after 4 weeks of voting had taken place, that became prohibited. let me explain. when i finished voting 5 times with one email in Firefox and then went to start voting again with another email in Firefox, the pop up box that said: "you have voted the maximum amount of times for today. you can cast 5 ballots per 24 hours up to 35 ballots. come back soon" emerged on my laptop and i could not vote further. so after a month, the powers that be decided that in order to resume voting with multiple emails in one day, fans would have to use multiple web browsers.
based on this first day of voting, this is not yet the case. i already voted today with two different emails in Firefox, got my "you have voted the max amount of times for today" pop up for both, and received my email notifications reaffirming that my day's votes were completed. so while two different browsers do not seem to be required right now, that's not to say that this won't change in the upcoming voting weeks.
in this day and age, i assume the majority of computer/laptop users have at least two browsers downloaded, if not more. i myself have four. they're really simple to download even if you're not tech savvy. some of the most popular options at your disposal include Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome, Microsoft Edge, Internet Explorer, Lynx, Opera, and/or Safari depending on if you're using a PC or Mac. so should this stipulation come to fruition at any point while voting is still open, just do a search for a free download for a browser, install it, and you'll be good to go to vote more!
4. i conducted a little experiment last year as well. (this is how you learn the loopholes, people! lol) after voting the full 35 times with an email address, which was supported by an email confirmation in my inbox, i waited another day and tried to vote 5 more times with that same email just for the heck of it to see if it would tell me that i couldn't. well, my trial-and-error showed no error because those votes all went through. nothing popped up telling me that i had already exhausted all of my votes from said email address or that my votes were invalid, which i found particularly odd. obviously those votes weren't calculated in the totals...or were they? i'm not certain and again, right now i don't know if the same thing will happen this year. but if that's a legit leak in the voting process, and you wanna make the attempt to vote 40 times with an email, try it at your own risk. it might be all for naught, or it could be a glitch that the system has yet to uncover...🙊
as you can see, there were some clear issues and inadequacies with the rules and regulations in 2016, so keep this in your memory bank as you continue to vote throughout May and June, because apparently things are subject to change.
the first set of results are ordinarily released at the end of May, and then ballot updates are provided on a weekly basis following that. each week, the 15 outfielders with the most votes will be listed. when the voting concludes, the three outfielders who received the highest number of fan votes--regardless of what position they play--are automatically designated for starting spots in the All Star Game. the reserves, on the other hand, are generally chosen from the remainder of the Top 15 outfielders.
it's extremely important to get Michael ranked as high as possible because he is up against all the AL center fielders and right fielders in addition to left fielders. i hate that, by the way, because grouping all the OFs together only makes it harder to earn a spot. he'd be a lock every time if he was merely going head to head with LF players. so please urge all your baseball fan friends, family members, co-workers, and neighbors to cast their votes for Michael, too! every vote counts and he will need a lot of them to even be considered for this event, as there is a lot of stiff competition among his outfield counterparts!!!
my watchful eye will be glued to the weekly ballot results as they are revealed online. you can follow me on twitter @clevelandgirl23 to track the changes in the rankings and progress that Michael is hopefully making week-by-week. i will also be documenting the Top 15 outfielder lists in my monthly cumulative Brantley blogs, noting how many votes he gained each week and if he moved up or down in the ranks. if you're not yet subscribed to my email list and would like to receive notifications whenever i publish a new blog, just submit your address in the box underneath the Blog Archive sidebar over on the upper right side of this page.
the final results of the All Star ballots will be announced shortly after the voting has closed. the full AL and NL rosters are customarily unveiled a week before the game during an Esurance All Star Selection Show on ESPN. the 88th annual All Star Game will be held in Miami, Florida, at Marlins Park on Tuesday, July 11. as always, you can tune in on FOX. live in Canada? you can watch on Rogers Sportsnet and RDS. pre-game festivities commence at 7:30 pm ET.
note: due to an update in the Collective Bargaining Agreement, the MLB All Star Game is no longer the determinant of which league will have home field advantage in the World Series--that will now be awarded to the team with the best record. so essentially, the game doesn't count for anything and can be played all in good fun, with less pressure, and also perhaps with less top-tier players interested in participating in it...😒
other than Brantley, which Cleveland Indians players are you going to vote for and who do you think will make this year's All Star squad? let me know in a comment below! and feel free to share my blog to spread the word if you like!