In the late eighties and early nineties, it was standard practice for preteen Dustin Parkes to collect discarded All-Star ballots at the SkyDome and punch out all of the Blue Jays and Expos candidates as well as the circle next to Ken Griffey Jr.’s name. I’m pretty sure I learned the homer ballot stuffing strategy from Oakland A’s fans who concentrated their efforts to ensure that their starting catcher Terry Steinbach was voted by the fans to become a starter at the 1988 All-Star Game.

Such things are still probably done by kids who don’t know any better, but instead of stealing ballots from the floor of their local ballpark, the youth baseball fans of today are probably manipulating ISP addresses in an effort to ensure that Brad Emaus gets consideration.

Yesterday, the 2011 ballot was released.

Even though it’s still ridiculously early in the season, here’s who an older and slightly more mature Dustin Parkes is voting for:

American League

C Russell Martin
1B Miguel Cabrera
2B Robinson Cano
3B Alex Rodriguez
SS Yunel Escobar
OF Jose Bautista
OF Ichiro!
OF Shin-Soo Choo
DH Adam Dunn

National League

C Buster Posey
1B Albert Pujols
2B Rickie Weeks
3B Pablo Sandoval
SS Troy Tulowitzki
OF Ryan Braun
OF Matt Holliday
OF Jason Heyward

I think choosing only three National League outfielders was the most difficult, followed closely by giving the nod to Pujols ahead of Joey Votto. It’ll also be interesting to see how many write in votes that Jed Lowrie receives. Are there any players that I’m overlooking? Feel free to have at it in the comments.

And The Rest:

Detroit Tigers’ Ryan Raburn earns his place on blooper reels for years to come by getting an assist on Miguel Olivo’s home run when the Mariners’ catcher drove a line drive to left field that bounced off Raburn’s glove and over the fence into the bullpen. That’s pretty much the only way Seattle players get home runs these days.

Today in earth shattering news: Vladimir Guerrero likes to swing at pitches.

MLBPA: Not so fast on all this expanded playoffs talk.

The Milwakee Brewers became the first team to use the 7-Day Disabled List for concussion symptoms when they placed Erick Almonte there with a concussion he suffered during batting practice yesterday.

Sergio Santos may be the White Sox new closer, but Brent Lilibridge saved last night’s game against the Yankees. Don’t believe me? Check out his Wikipedia page.

Brandon Webb is still a ways away from being able to pitch at the Major League level.

Getting Blanked contributor Sam Miller literally counted the number of fans at Monday night’s Pittsburgh Pirates game.

You just keep telling yourself that Derek Jeter has great range.

Carl Everett has been charged after he pointed a gun at his wife. As someone asked on Twitter yesterday: Did you really expect to hear good things from Carl Everett after he retired?

Will 2011 be The Year Of The Pitcher Part Deux? Personally, I’m not really into the whole label thing.

Michael Cuddyer is the Minnesota Twins’ starting second baseman. Fo’ reals.

A baseball book fantasy draft. Why not?

For the record, Charlie Sheen did not bail out Lenny Dykstra.

Comments (26)

  1. I wholly support Getting Blanked’s efforts to preserve the Animated GIF for future generations.

  2. Escobar? Really?

  3. Parkes,

    Pujols over Votto? Really? You’re aware of their stats, rights? It’s not even close at this point in the season.

    • Part of voting this early in the season is that you have to weigh talent with current performance. Sometimes I swayed one way (Escobar), sometimes I swayed the other (Pujols).

  4. I see your point, didn’t realize how sub par the crop of SS’s in the AL were. Only other consideration is Andrus. But it’s a pointless exercise, since we all know Mr. Minka Kelly will be in Arizona this year.

  5. A point could be made for Asdrubal Cabrera..

  6. I feel sorry for Rayburn in that he almost caught the ball and made the out. This doesn’t account for his positioning or speed, or his skiil. I’d give him a 4 on the “Jose Canseco ball bouncing off my head for a home run making me look like a nincompoop” scale.

  7. Heyward over Matt Kemp is ludicrous. Just saying…

  8. Brandon Phillips over Weeks IMO

  9. And I personally would give it Wright over the Panda

  10. Regardless of any All-Star disagreements we have right now, I think we can all agree that it’s ludicrous to release the ballots so early. How about waiting until at least May?

  11. GASP. Bautista is today’s cover story on ESPN’s MLB page. Consider our boy “officially” exposed.

  12. garold, so 4 days too early then? lol

  13. What?! No Brett Lawrie?! :)

  14. @ dc

    Yes, those 4 days are going to be vital to making my selections.

    Seriously though, it seems like the season just started and we’re already talking about all-star ballots. It’s kind of like hearing Christmas music in the mall in early November.

  15. Want a good laugh? Read the comments at the end of the ESPN Bautista cover story. Lets just say the word ‘steroids’ is used as the main arguement for Bautista’s play….by commentators who have never seen him play.

  16. Jose Conseco’s bouncer off his noggin for a HR is still the best.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i0EJBlUiZS0

  17. Emaus better make it.

  18. I’ve learned to avoid criticizing anyone’s All Star ballot. Yours is fair and well thought out.

    However, my personal rule is to never – EVER – vote a Yankee or Red Sock (x?) Why? Because fuck ‘em, that’s why.

  19. Good ballot all around, and about 60% matched up with mine. I agree with that Sox and Yanks policy though. I was gonna put one or two down, but it’s not like they need a Jays fan to begrudgingly acknowledge their talent.

  20. Great ballot, better .gifs. The only difference I had in mine was Ryan Zimmerman over Sandoval at 3B, and Rasmus over Hayward.

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