With apologies to Delmon Young, Paul Konerko and Michael Young, this MLB Final Vote campaign really comes down to two candidates in the American League: Kevin Youkilis and Nick Swisher. With less than 48 hours to go until polls close, Youkilis and Swisher are battling for the final spot, and Swisher has pulled ahead as of this morning. Now is the time to dig in. Do you have voter fatigue? Are you feeling less than enthused about spending hours upon hours typing in the CAPTCHA code and unchecking the “Please Spam Me” box on MLB.com’s All-Star Final Vote ballot? Do you need a pick-me-up to inspire you to carry Swisher across the finish line? I thought up ten awesome reasons for you to burn out your eyes and wear out your mouse voting for Swisher. Here they are, in no particular order.
1. Obscenity. Swisher used to make obscene gestures with Johnny Damon after each time one of them homered. Here is an example (NSFW, obviously). Why is this a reason to send Nick Swisher? Because Kevin Youkilis doesn’t have any friends with which to make obscene gestures, and the only time he made an obscene gesture in front of the camera was here (again, NSFW). The person taking that photo was a four year-old Red Sox fan who cried for days afterwards.* Youkilis hates his fans.
2. Good Humor. Ever see this commercial on ESPN? Hilarious stuff. He also appeared on How I Met Your Mother, which you can see here, and was equally funny. Television critics generally agree that this commercial and this portion of the sitcom are the two greatest moments of television history in the aughts and the 10s-20s, as well as possibly since time immemorial. Kevin Youkilis once appeared on Sully Versus McMurph** but quit after only 30 seconds because he didn’t like the lighting.
3. Ethics. Kevin Youkilis bludgeons baby seals.*** I saw him do it once and it was graphic and awful and he laughed like a maniac the entire time. From what I understand, he does it regularly. It’s how he soothes himself after a called third strike.**** Additionally, Youkilis knows how to plug the oil leak but refuses to share his secret. Why won’t he tell? Because he hates America.
4. Spite. The Boston beat writers are rooting for Youkilis. Take Ian Browne*****, for instance. Check out these displays of homerism over the past few days: here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here and just a few moments ago here. I think my favorite is the one about Youkilis lobbying with his bat. Look, if Browne is going to be a fanboy and not observe the time-honored “no cheering in the press box” rule, then I think it is incumbent upon us to enforce it for him by keeping “Youk” at home. Fair’s fair, or something.
5. Stats. Among American League outfielders, Nick Swisher has the fourth-highest wOBA, the seventh-highest wRC, the fifth-highest SLG, the seventh-most HR and the eighth-most RBI. If you restrict the parameters to RFers, Swisher ranks 2nd, 4th, 2nd, 4th and 4th in those respective categories. That’s impressive. If you restrict the parameters to strictly RFers that play in New York City then Swisher ranks first in all categories because Jeff Francouer is lame and probably should be playing in the indy leagues. Swisher=1st.
6. Bribery. The Red Sox are offering Monster Seats to vote for Youkilis. That’s called bribery where I’m from, and it’s completely untoward. Untoward! As an unrelated side note, I will give you a #FF on Twitter if you tell me that you voted for Swisher. I only have 110 followers, but they’re awesome and also impressionable and they’ll all follow you immediately.****** If you don’t have a Twitter account then I will send you ten Gmail invites.
7. Good Times. When I went to the World Series celebration parade, I got to see all the players up close. It was fun. Cervelli, Pena and Matsui looked like they stepped out of a Canali ad. Jeter looked like Jeter, with a fade and sunglasses that looked like they came straight from the mid-90s. Sabathia looked cool as ever, and Tex looked like the whitest guy in New York City. And Swisher? He and his then-girlfriend, now-fiance Joanna Garcia looked like they had been partying for two days straight. And you know what? I bet they had. That’s just how they roll.
8. Heroism. One time I was walking home from the subway and there was a building on fire. Firefighters were too afraid to go in because the heat from the flames was melting their hoses. It was grim. And then out of nowhere a flash of long hair went running into the building, straight into the flames. We all screamed, “NO! NO! IT’S TOO HOT! YOU’LL NEVER MAKE IT”, but the man paid us no mind. In he went, and he made trip after trip into the flames. Out came a baby in a bassinet. Out came a grandmother in a rocking chair. Out came three kittens. Out came the family’s dried goods, their fruit and vegetables, their flatware and their coffee table. Out came their television, their DVR and their collection of DVDs. Finally the man collapsed on the sidewalk. He smelled of smoke, and his hair was singed. I think you know who it was, and now you also know how he got his mohawk.
9. Empathy. Nick Swisher would vote for you. Ever read his Twitter account? He would totally vote for you, bro!
10. Eye Candy.
Swisher FTW. Go ahead, get going. Send Swish.
*Unverified, possibly made up by the author.
**Sully Versus McMurph is* a late night cable-access sports show on local Boston television featuring two middle-aged men arguing with one another about Boston sports. Typical arguments include whether the 2007 Red Sox remind them more of the 2004 Patriots or the 2008 Celtics, as well as whether anyone would have the gall to deny that Boston-area sports teams are the best and that Boston-area sports fans are the most authentic. Generally speaking, they rarely find anyone denying or attempt to deny any of it. Then they argue over whether the mayor of Red Sox City should be Pedroia or Bruschi.
*As of press time I was unable to verify that this show exists.
***Unclear as to whether the bludgeoner was Youkilis or someone else; also unclear as to whether the object bludgeoned was in fact a baby seal; also unclear as to whether the said event ever took place, or whether it was imagined so as to gain sympathy for the author’s candidate of preference and arouse anger and loathing for his opponent; who can know such things?
****Please note that Kevin Youkilis has never had a legitimate third strike called against him; every called third strike was a ball and represented a personal slight toward him by the umpire.
*****This is the same Ian Browne that criticized Anthony DiComo for calling Mike Pelfrey “Pelf”. Why is this relevant? Because Browne can’t refer to Kevin Youkilis without calling him “Youk”, something that DiComo and I noted. Apparently Boston writers are the only ones allowed to be fanboys. I really need to unfollow some of these guys. It’s bad for my health.
******They probably won’t.
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