Friday, July 9, 2010

Yankee fans shower Swish with love, votes

New York Yankees fans took to their computers and cellphones to "send Swish" to the All-Star game.

After this weekend's series against the Seattle Mariners, Swisher and several teammates will head to Anaheim to represent the Yankees and the city of New York in next week's midsummer classic. Showering our playful right fielder with love, we cast 9.8 million votes in his favor (I voted for Swish several hundred times) in Major League Baseball's Final Vote, ensuring his victory in a tight race against the Boston Red Sox Kevin Youkilis (suck it, Boston!) and three other players.

Bravo to the Yankees marketing staff for a brilliant campaign, which was built around the perfect player. Unlike Mike Francesa, I did not think the campaign was over the top. I thought the email encouraging Yankee fans to vote for Swisher 33 times (his uniform number) at 3:30 ET right before the voting ended was particularly clever.

Swisher played like he was on cloud 9 yesterday, reaching base five times with four hits and a run, including a double to set up the Yankees rally that led to the eventual winning run. He raised his All-Star caliber numbers in the process: .307 batting average, 14 home runs, 48 ribbies and 53 runs scored.

The thing I love the most about Swisher winning the fan vote is that he's not even trying to play cool about it. He was obviously thrilled to make the All-Star team and incredibly thankful to the fans for making it happen, filming a video to express his gratitude directly to his fans. That's the way players should react.

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