Giant fans may be the catalyst for a voting change in the 2013 All-Star Game; at least if Bud Selig is having a nostalgic moment rather than a marketing one.
Not because Buster Posey got the most votes at catcher, even though he wasnt having the best year. And not because Pablo Sandoval won at third base, even though David Wright had better numbers. Hell, getting more votes than any New York player is a pretty nice piece of election-fixing.
No, heres where they blew their covers. Brandon Belt and Brandon Crawford both finished second at their positions, and Freddy Sanchez, whose current position is prone, finished fourth at second base, which is plainly and incontrovertibly ridiculous, and must be dealt with.
Belt got 3.9 million votes, well behind Cincinnatis Joey Votto, while Crawfords 3.6 million votes were just 300,000 fewer than the Cardinals Rafael Furcal. Even with Troy Tulowitzki out and Jimmy Rollins either out or missing part of the season with injuries, that hits absurd in the face and then kicks when it hits the ground.
BAGGARLY: Giants fans rock the vote, elect three All-Star starters
And Sanchez got nearly 2.3 million votes despite the fact that he has been a hologram all season long.
Voter fraud is the principal lesson of the All-Star Game, proof that the starters are less important than the reserves for the perfectly good reason that the reserves actually require some baseball-related judgments.
But this defied logic, and Giant fans, who love playing both the wounded underdog and the victims of both Southern California and East Coast biases, ought to have at least some sense of shame that they could game a crooked system this aggressively.
Now we know the response from the fans: Too bad, so sad, shut up. That hasnt been the one when Giants have gotten jobbed, of course, and the one up side of this outrage is that Giant fans can never play the role of the meek ever again.
Still, Belt and Crawford? Freddy Sanchez rather than Hector? Why not Ryan Theriot? How did Angel Pagan and Gregor Blanco fall through the cracks? Why didnt they completely mock the process and make a late run for Aubrey Huff, or go nostalgic and make a run for Eli Whiteside? I mean, if youre going to choke a ballot box until it vomits, dont get a conscience. Run the table.
That was what the Cincinnati fans did in 1959, getting six starters on the NL team and forcing the fans to lose the vote for a delightfully long time. And though Bud would never turn his back on a way to squeeze an internet buck, he must surely know that the Flying Brandons got way more fraud . . . er, support, than they had a reasonable right to expect.
And Sanchez is, well, go ahead and try to defend that one. We dare you.
The point here is, you have voted in such numbers for such absurd concepts that you can never complain about the All-Star process again. That is, until Bud decides to do what he does best tweak something.
And this time, youll be the reason. Congratulations, kids. You made history.