MLB Network's second annual exercise in anointing the "Face of MLB" is ongoing, with the Athletics voting in progress. Eric Sogard was Oakland's representative last year and the eventual runner up to David Wright, whose victory remains clouded by accusations of vote-rigging. The entire contest last year was a spectacle of dedicated attempts to defeat MLB's efforts to create a face.
It's that time of year, who will rep Oakland as #FaceOfAthletics?! VOTE using #FirstNameLastName & #FaceOfAthletics! pic.twitter.com/CLkPeTt4Fu— Oakland Athletics (@Athletics) January 8, 2015
A's fans so far
To this point, 23 teams have nominated their "faces" over twitter, but A's fans have done their best to spin the contest in the favor of former A's players, documents Alex Espinosa at his "The Rickey Henderson" blog. For instance, Alberto Callaspo finished in a strong third place in the Face of the Atlanta Braves competition:
Matt Vasgersian: "I hope the same guys that voted for Alberto Callaspo as the Face of the Braves..." (1 of 2) pic.twitter.com/eCGFXRUtCZ— Nicholas Badders (@RFNick149) December 18, 2014
(2 of 2) "... I hope that they can pick an equally obscure Brewer because I love when this thing gets sabotaged like that."— Nicholas Badders (@RFNick149) December 18, 2014
And Seth Smith actually won the Face of the Padres competition on December 18. He has since been replaced by Matt Kemp, though there was an effort to get Smith named the Face of the Mariners in the contest that concluded on January 6 with Felix Hernandez winning.
The current effort is to get Grant Balfour named the Face of the Rays:
@Shakabrodie Balfour will punch you in the face! #BalfourRage #GrantBalfour #FaceOfRays pic.twitter.com/mxwuSxZkEl— Will MacNeil (@RFWill149) January 8, 2015
A close race for the Face of the Athletics?
An early scan of the voting indicates that Eric Sogard is unlikely to repeat as Face of the Athletics, but it is otherwise anyone's game. The contenders:
He's very funny on Twitter, especially when collaborating with girlfriend Eireann Dolan:
@whatwouldDOOdo can they make your next baseball card say Sean "Big Dogs" Doolittle #bigdogs #garage pic.twitter.com/HWRa9eXCAm— Eireann Dolan (@EireannDolan) January 6, 2015
A highlight of the votes in support:
Certified #FaceOfAthletics is none other than #SeanDoolittle pic.twitter.com/vIxrcMsg7o— Omar G (@omar01) January 8, 2015
Stephen Vogt's NBA referee routine is his best known act, and it will be showcased on Thursday, May 28 with a bobblehead giveaway in the game against the New York Yankees. Did you know, however, he actually finished second in last March's spring talent with a Chris Farley impression?
Brace yourselves, #FaceOfAthletics votes for #StephenVogt will be in your feed all day. pic.twitter.com/FdEu8H8JtG— Jennifer Trumpp (@JenniferTrumpp) January 8, 2015
New third baseman Brett Lawrie has so far received few votes in the competition, but maybe if we knew he does not skip leg day, we would cast more votes for him:
just out for a dive are yaaa buddddd ??? great day out with @danalong1 @daniellelawrie5 great snorkel… http://t.co/PRCKiGNn7S— Brett Lawrie (@blawrie13) January 7, 2015
Brett Lawrie does not skip leg day.
Unfortunately, only currently rostered players are eligible to win the competition, making these ballots spoiled:
It's simple. The #UnicornBackpack is the #FaceOfAthletics— Jason Burke (@BaseballMiAmor) January 8, 2015
Player to be named later #FaceOfAthletics— Joe (@Thatbaseballjoe) January 8, 2015
Like seriously, how can you not ? #Stomper #FaceOFAthletics pic.twitter.com/ZmDeMOnFqN— Keith Barnard (@Keith2TheCity) January 8, 2015
But let's be honest, #BillyBeane is the #FaceOfAthletics pic.twitter.com/6XtpurUjFG— Nick Clementi (@RFNick148) January 8, 2015
How to vote
Today, just tweet out #FaceofAthletics and a hashtag of the first and last name of the player you're voting for, like this:
This is an example of a vote for Sean Doolittle, written for this article I’m about to post on AN. #SeanDoolittle #FaceOfAthletics— Jeremy F. Koo (@jfkooAN) January 8, 2015