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The official DRaysBay all-star ballot recommendation

Conclusion: Rays fans like good players.

Now go Vogt for Kiermaier.
Now go Vogt for Kiermaier.
Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

The story of this all-star voting season has been the dominance of the Kansas City vote bots. The most recent update on voting had eight Royals in starting spots, with perhaps only one deserving said spot. That's not debatable. What is debatable is whether or not you should care. I mean, this is a similar situation to how the Yankees and the Red Sox used to win all the starting spots based on name recognition alone.

Still, it does demonstrate the power of collective (robotic) action, so Rays fans too should organize. A bit over a week ago, I  asked y'all to decide on an official ballot. There were certain guidelines you were asked to consider:

  1. When deserving, vote for Rays.
  2. When deserving, vote for former Rays
  3. When no Rays or former Rays are not deserving, vote for players who are.
  4. Make sure no Red Sox or Yankees win.

Here are the results. About 21 people voted. That is far less than the number of people who read the article asking them to vote, but it is an accurate representation of the number of Rays fans in existence, so I'll take it. Now go forth, you brave 21, and make your mark on the All-Star game.

Catcher

Catcher Votes
Stephen Vogt 19
Russell Martin 1
Bobby Wilson 1

Rays fans are united on this one. There is only one choice. And he's over two-million points behind the powerful but poor-hitting Salvador Perez and his vastly overrated (no-framing) defense. He needs your help. Vogt for him.

First Base

First Base Votes
Miguel Cabrera 13
Eric Hosmer 4
Prince Fielder 2
Testers 2

We have a similarly unified voice about first base. Eric Hosmer is a fine player, and I'd love to have him as the Rays first baseman. But there are no other hitters like Miguel Cabrera, and Rays fans appear to know that.

Second Base

Second Base Votes
Jason Kipnis 8
Logan Forsythe 7
Brian Dozier 3

This was the closest race as far as our community was concerned. Logan Forsythe is having an amazing, all-star-worthy season. He's playing quality defense everywhere that the Rays need him. And he's vastly cut down his strikeouts, and that improvement is powering his offensive game to a .264/.346/.431 slash line that's 26% above average.

Interestingly though, there's another player having a very similar season. Jason Kipnis has also cut down on his strikeouts this year. That's a true-talent improvement that's propelling Kipnis to an even better .335/.409/.504 slash line. That's 60% above average.

We Rays fans love our Frosty, but we also seem to be able to identify quality baseball, and think it should be recognized. I like it. of course, neither of these guys will win. Both Jose Altuve and Omar Infante are vastly inferior choices. Oh well.

Third Base

Third Base Votes
Josh Donaldson 9
Evan Longoria 6
Mike Moustakas 3

Similarly to at second base, we like our guy, but we can tell that someone else is having a better season and we think he should be recognized. That someone is not Mike Moustakas. It's Josh Donaldson and his .575 slugging percentage.

Shortstop

Shortstop Votes
Marcus Semien 5
Jose Iglesias 3
None of the Above 3
Brad Miller 2
Alcides Escobar 1
Jed Lawrie 1
Asdrubal Cabrera 1
Derek Jeter 1

This one was close. Marcus Semien and his pairing league-average offense with below-average defense narrowly edged out "None of the Above."

Outfield

Outfield Votes
Mike Trout 14
Kevin Kiermaier 8
Lorenzon Cain 6
Adam Jones 4
David DeJesus 4
Alex Gordon 2
Steven Souza Jr. 2
Josh Reddick 1

Finally, we have a Rays player who this group of Rays fans thinks should start the All-Star Game. We know that Mike Trout is the best player in baseball, but watching every day as we do, we also know that Kevin Kiermaier is the best defender in baseball.

Don't back away from that statement. He plays one of the three most difficult positions on the field. It's a position manned by defensive studs. An average defensive center fielder is a joy to watch, but Kevin Kiermaier oozes defense on the eye test that puts those average center fielders to shame, and the numbers back that up. He breaks more quickly than everyone else, he runs faster, and he works harder. He fields routine grounders at a full sprint so that he can be coming in at the perfect angle to make a throw, even when the runner clearly has no intention of testing his arm.

Sometimes The Overboogie makes mistakes, but that's the nature of The Overboogie. I think you're right on this, Rays fans. The Overboogie deserves to be recognized.

Designated Hitter

Designated Hitter Votes
Nelson Cruz 16
Alex Rodriguez 1
John Jaso 1

Community member Sveet knows the value of on base percentage, and John Jaso's is 1.000.

Go here to vote.