Siberian Baseball

Friday, July 06, 2007

Vote, robot, vote!

Quick, who was the starting shortstop for the National League in 1986?

Exactly, who gives a damn after a few years, right?

My initial reaction to Larry Brown Sports' findings that some San Francisco fans might have used technology to their advantage to vote for Bonds up to 50 or 60 times per minute was to make quick, snarky judgments about cheater athletes having cheater fans, but with a little time to cool off, I'm pretty indifferent to the whole situation.

Like most fans, I don't have a great deal of interest about the team, beyond who actually makes the rosters. Truth be told, I get a bigger charge out of the Home Run Derby and Celebrity Softball Game than the All-Star game most years.

For the players, while - say it with me, campers - "It's an honor to be recognized by the fans..." I imagine most of them enjoy having a few days off in the middle of the season to get home, see their families, maybe cut the grass or sell a few grills on eBay.

Aside from cash bonuses that are part of some contracts, there's not a whole lot of incentive to get the players out there. I guess what I'm saying is that if the players don't seem to care, I'm not going to lose a lot of sleep over it.

That's not to say that I believe everyone in the majors is apathetic about the game, but I'd bet that most of the guys who missed out on the voting and the selections are over it by now.

So if it was Bonds' faithful fans or Pat Neshek's that employed the vote-bots to drive the numbers up - as was suggested in the comments section on the Ballhype link - it seems like a few people have all sorts of time on their hands.

Personally, I vote a few times and lose interest and I can't imagine that you wouldn't find odd voting trends for any of the winning players. The then gleefully gloat about how you "duped" MLB by using fake e-mail addresses just makes things that much more pathetic.

That said, I'll be royally pissed off if any of those IP's match up with MLB offices in New York.

(And for anyone who's wondering, the starting SS was Ozzie Smith.)

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