What a difference a year makes. You couldn't shake a stick without hitting an Oriole on the All-Star ballot last year. They were everywhere, and for good reason, because a number of Orioles were in the midst of awesome seasons. That has not carried over to this year. MLB released the first voting update for 2015 All-Star Game ballots on Tuesday afternoon. There are no Orioles currently voted in as starters and few to be found anywhere among the top vote-getters at each position.
A blue tide has swept over the first batch of ballots, with five Kansas City Royals players currently among the nine American League starters. Another three Royals are runner-up at their positions. They cannot be stopped.
The closest member of the Orioles to a starting spot, and really the only one who has a chance to be voted in now, is outfielder Adam Jones, who trails the Royals' Alex Gordon by just shy of 10,000 votes. Jones has 981,926 votes to Gordon's 991,606.
Remember, this is the first ever year where there are no paper ballots, only online voting. You can vote up to 35 times per e-mail address, and if you're so inclined, you can do so here.
Other than Jones, the only Orioles to make it into the top five of each position (15 outfielders) are Manny Machado and Caleb Joseph. Machado is a distant fourth in the third base voting, nearly a million votes behind the current leader, Mike Moustakas. He's also far behind Josh Donaldson and a bit less behind Pablo Sandoval. Machado has received 266,746 votes.
There's also Joseph coming in fifth in the voting at catcher. Joseph has received 205,568 votes for the All-Star Game. That's nearly 1.2 million votes behind the leading vote-getter, Kansas City's Salvador Perez. He also trails Oakland's Stephen Vogt, as well as Russell Martin and Brian McCann. For both of these Orioles, that's pretty much where they belong. Joseph has been a great story. Maybe he'll manage to make it as a reserve regardless of how the voting shakes out.
Between injuries and the sucks, it's hard to argue that the Orioles have any worthy candidates at any of the other positions. Jonathan Schoop might have been a good choice at second base if he hadn't gotten hurt. As for the rest, only the most dedicated of Orioles homers are going to vote for players like Alejandro De Aza, Steve Pearce, and Chris Davis, no matter how many hashtagged exhortations to Vote Orange the team may send out.
If people are going to break up this Kansas City voting bloc, it's probably not going to be Orioles players doing so. Omar Infante is in second place for second base right now, for crying out loud. That's just embarrassing for all involved parties.
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