This year, Major League Baseball made voting for the All-Star Game an online-only affair for the first time. And, for the first time, one team’s fans have completely hijacked the voting.
Look at all those Royals up there, eight of them in the American League starting lineup, including second baseman Omar Infante, who is hitting .228 and is the worst offensive player in baseball.
MLB officials insist they haven’t found any sort of large-scale hack job on the vote — heh — and say the results simply stem from the Royals’ ardent followers. Still, they have thrown out a sizable number of votes.
“I’m not saying we bat 1.000,” Bob Bowman, chief executive of MLB Advanced Media, told Yahoo’s Jeff Passan. “But it’s between 60 and 65 million votes that have been canceled. We don’t really trumpet it because if someone thinks they’re getting away with it, they’ll try to again.”
MLB says more than 300 million votes have been counted and that the record of 391 million from 2012 will fall soon. But with its admission that around 1 in 5 have been tossed, it’s only opening itself up to more questions about whether everything is on the up and up.