All-Star Ballot Boycott? Oakland fans already came up with an Anti-Manfred plan

Oakland Athletics, Oakland A's
Oakland Athletics, Oakland A's / Michael Zagaris/GettyImages

Perhaps MLB commissioner Rob Manfred has rubbed the wrong fanbase... In a never-ending effort to express their discontent with the franchise owner/president and baseball-powers-that-be, fans of the Oakland Athletics are already plotting their next masterplan after the supremely successful Reverse Boycott.

The A's faithful still thinks they can salvage the Athletics from their inevitable move to Las Vegas after Nevada Gov. Joe Lombardo signed the stadium bill earlier this week. Their next challenge: messing with the All-Star voting process.

Taking inspiration from a previously semi-successful campaign they put together in 2014, A's supporters are aiming to flood the ballot boxes with votes for their favorite players, no matter their name, talent, visibility, and fame across the baseball landscape.

This is going to cause a stir and come loaded with bunches of controversy, of course, but it is nothing new. More recently in 2017, something similar happened in the NBA, prompting the league to implement corrective measures. Will that be about to happen in the MLB this summer?

Getting back to the A's fans' efforts in reshaping the All-Star game to their favor, it was 2014 when the supporters of the franchise orchestrated a successful takeover of the MLB's "Face of MLB" contest. They rallied behind second baseman Eric Sogard.

Even though he ultimately failed to win such a voting process in the final round, the A's and their fans showcased their strength by sending an impressive seven players to the All-Star Game.

Now, as the All-Star game voting opens, A's fans have devised a plan to rally behind their team once again.

Their strategy involves voting daily and casting their ballots for every eligible A's player, maximizing their influence on the selection process. Each fan is granted five ballots per day until June 22 to determine the favorite players before moving on to select the starters.

A's Ballot Boycott? The NBA banned a similar initiative after 2017 screwup

The NBA faced a similar predicament with its All-Star fan voting system. While this approach allows fans to actively engage, it has also led to some issues of late.

In 2017, an unexpected outcome occurred when Zaza Pachulia, a veteran player with mediocre-at-best stats, received over 400,000 votes from basketball fans (and trolls) across the world, helping him overtake way more deserving players on his way to clinching an ASG call. To prevent further anomalies, the NBA introduced the "Zaza Rule," which factored player and media votes into the equation of the selection process to avoid this problem happening in future editions of the event.

The implementation of the "Zaza Rule" was necessary to prevent potential embarrassment and ensure a fair selection process. Without such corrective measures, players with meme-able appeal might have gained substantial fan support and crowded ASG rosters without making much sense at all on a pure sporting basis.

At the end of the day, trying to boycott the move to Las Vegas is a valid initiative most people tend to agree with because the MLB is trying to remove such a historied franchise from the place where they earned all of their fame, and where they became a prime part of an extraordinarily rich culture and community.

That said, the All-Star is meant to represent the status of the league when it comes to featuring their best players on a yearly basis, and to take a snapshot of the league at a particular season for future reference and archiving of the history of the MLB.

A’s select Tyler Wade, place Kevin Smith on 10-Day IL. dark. Next. A’s select Tyler Wade, place Kevin Smith on 10-Day IL

Ultimately, this protest highlights the passion and dedication of A's fans in their quest for change within Major League Baseball, but it shouldn't truly be either expected or considered too serious as the MLB will probably come up with something to prevent a catastrophe--a roster filled with A's players--to affect their marquee summer event.