Marlins making push for McGehee in Final Vote race
Miami has expanded voting campaign all the way to Japan for third baseman
MIAMI -- The Marlins' all-out push to get Casey McGehee into the All-Star Game and on the National League roster is in full swing, and the drive spans from South Florida to Japan.
McGehee, who leads the NL in hits, needs support to win the 2014 All-Star Game MLB.com Final Vote Sponsored by Experian.
The first wave of results was released on Tuesday, and Miami's third baseman is fifth. Colorado's Justin Morneau leads over Chicago's Anthony Rizzo. Atlanta's Justin Upton is third, followed by Washington's Anthony Rendon, and then McGehee.
But the Marlins have mobilized in an effort to get McGehee the necessary votes by Thursday's deadline. Efforts include radio, newspaper and television ads in South Florida. The Marlins are also getting the word out in Japan for fans to vote for McGehee, who played last year for the Rakuten Golden Eagles.
"It's a full commitment," said Sean Flynn, the Marlins' senior vice president of marketing and event booking. "We're all over it."
In Japan, McGehee was a teammate of current Yankees right-hander Masahiro Tanaka, who used Twitter to encourage his followers to vote for McGehee.
McGehee enters Tuesday batting .322, and he paces the NL in hits with 110. McGehee leads all NL third basemen in RBIs with 53, and he is first in the Majors in batting average with runners in scoring position (.398).
McGehee is riding a career-best 14-game hitting streak, and he's hit safely in 21 straight road games.
"Our goal is getting Casey into the All-Star Game," Flynn said. "There is no doubt he should be in."
Final Vote candidates
|P||Dallas Keuchel, HOU|
|P||Corey Kluber, CLE|
|P||Rick Porcello, DET|
|P||Garrett Richards, LAA|
|P||Chris Sale, CWS|
|1B||Justin Morneau, COL|
|2B||Anthony Rendon, WAS|
|1B||Anthony Rizzo, CHC|
|3B||Casey McGehee, MIA|
|OF||Justin Upton, ATL|
Organizationally, the Marlins are having a watch party for Tuesday's game at Arizona, and there will be a voting center to cast votes.
"This is one of the most aggressive Final Vote campaigns," Flynn said.
The Marlins have reached out to their friends at the University of Miami and Florida International University to get the word out to vote for McGehee.
McGehee is scheduled to do radio interviews, and so is slugger Giancarlo Stanton, who is currently the lone Marlin selected to the All-Star Game.
The Marlins have partnered with the Astros, who have a Final Vote candidate in the American League in pitcher Dallas Keuchel. Houston is pushing McGehee in its market, and Miami is throwing its support behind Keuchel.
On Monday, the Marlins reached out to their contacts with the D-backs, and they had a local Arizona vendor print up #VoteHitsMcGehee T-shirts.
Flynn said the Marlins contacted the vendor at 11 a.m. ET on Monday, and by batting practice, each Miami player and member of the coaching staff sported a McGehee T-shirt.
Perhaps the biggest push McGehee could receive will come from Japan. A year ago, McGehee was part of the Golden Eagles' championship team.
Already, the "Vote McGehee" campaign has reached McGehee's former team and his ex-teammates. The Japanese media has picked up on the campaign.
"Tanaka has jumped on board," Flynn said. "It's huge if we can activate Japan to get on this train."
Immediately following the announcement of the All-Star rosters on Sunday, fans began voting to select the final player for each league's 34-man roster via the 2014 All-Star Game MLB.com Final Vote Sponsored by Experian. Fans can cast their votes from a list of five players from each league until the winners are announced after the voting concludes on Thursday at 4 p.m. ET.
Fans can also cast votes on the mobile web at MLB.com/vote or via text message. To receive the Final Vote ballot, text the word "VOTE" to 89269. To vote for a specific player, fans can text their choice to 89269. For example: Text "A3" to vote for AL Player 3 or "N3" to vote for NL Player 3. Standard message and data rates may apply. Text "STOP" to end and "HELP" for information. Mobile voting in Canada also is available and fans should text their choices to 101010.
For the third consecutive year, the All-Star Game MLB.com Final Vote will include social balloting participation, as Twitter support from the 10 candidates' fans over the last six hours of balloting will count toward their final vote totals. From 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. ET on Thursday, any tweet that includes a designated player hashtag will be tabulated as part of the official vote total used to determine the winners. Fans will be able to follow @MLB for the latest standings updates over the course of the entire four-day voting period.
The hashtags and text designations are as follows
Dallas Keuchel: #VoteKeuchel (A1)
Corey Kluber: #VoteKluber (A2)
Rick Porcello: #PickRick (A3)
Garrett Richards: #VoteGRich (A4)
Chris Sale: #TargetSale (A5)
Casey McGehee: #VoteHitsMcGehee (N1)
Justin Morneau: #VoteMorneau (N2)
Anthony Rendon: #VoteRendon (N3)
Anthony Rizzo: #VoteRizzo (N4)
Justin Upton: #VoteJUp (N5)
The final phase of All-Star Game voting will again allow fans to help choose the Ted Williams All-Star Game Most Valuable Player Award presented by Chevrolet. During the Midsummer Classic, fans will vote exclusively online at MLB.com and via Twitter in the 2014 All-Star Game MLB.com MVP Vote Sponsored by Pepsi, and their collective voice will represent 20 percent of the overall vote that determines the recipient of the Arch Ward Trophy.
MLB.TV Premium subscribers, for the first time, will be able to live stream the All-Star Game via MLB.TV through FOX's participating video providers. Access will be available across more than 400 platforms that support MLB.TV, including the award-winning MLB.com At Bat app. MLB.com will provide extensive online coverage of the All-Star Week festivities.
The 85th All-Star Game will be televised nationally by FOX, in Canada by Rogers Sportsnet and RDS, and worldwide by partners in more than 200 countries via MLB International's independent feed. ESPN Radio and ESPN Radio Deportes will provide national radio coverage of the All-Star Game. MLB Network and SiriusXM will also provide comprehensive All-Star Week coverage. For more information, please visit allstargame.com.