All-Star Voting Closes

Voting for the 2013 KBO All-Star game wrapped up yesterday. Online fan voting will determine the starters for the game, while team managers will be responsible for choosing the reserves. Below is a list of the players with the most votes. See if you notice anything strange.

Western     Eastern  
Radhames Liz LG Start P Yoon Sung-Hwan Samsung
Bong Jung-Keun LG Rel P Oh Seung-Hwan Samsung
Hyun Jae-Yun LG C Kang Min-Ho Lotte
Kim Yong-Ui LG 1B Lee Seung-Yeop Samsung
Son Joo-In LG 2B Jeong Keun-Woo SK
Jeong Seong-Hoon LG 3B Choi Jeong SK
Oh Ji-Hwan LG SS Shin Bon-Ki Lotte
Park Yong-Taik LG OF Kim Hyun-Soo Doosan
Jeong Ui-Yoon LG OF Jeon Jun-Woo Lotte
Lee Byeong-Kyu LG OF Son Ah-Seop Lotte
Lee Jin-Young LG DH Kim Dae-Woo Lotte

The LG Twins swept all 11 spots on the Western team lineup. LG has performed unexpectedly well so far this season, and this seems to have revived their fan base. LG certainly has some deserving players, but all 11 spots? That's a bit much. This phenomenon is nothing new in Korea. The Lotte Giants had 11 starters last year, and have traditionally received a lot of votes. It seems that many Korean fans simply log in and vote for everyone on their favorite team. It's really too bad that the voting always seems to turn out this way. It may simply be unavoidable in a league with such a small number of teams, but it definitely takes a lot of meaning out of being named on all-star. Thankfully, the managers will select the remaining deserving players as reserves.

I would love to see the league do something to tackle this problem, but I'm not sure that they have any interest in doing so. Getting fans to come back to the website every day to vote may be exactly what they want, but here are some ideas that I've come up with.

  • Limit voters to one vote only. Korea may be in a very unique position to easily enforce something like this. Real name verification laws make it very difficult to create more than one account without stealing someone's identity. As it is now, fans can come back every day and vote for their team.
  • Limit voters to a maximum number of players from any one team... let's say 5. This would ensure that votes get spread around a bit more.
  • Give players and/or managers (maybe sportswriters too?) weighted votes. You could make each manager vote worth 10,000 fan votes or something similar. I'm sure someone who is better at math than I am could determine an ideal number. The general public has proven that they can't be trusted to choose the best players on their own.

Have any ideas of your own? Share them below in the comments.

The All-Star Game will take place July 19 in Pohang. Stay tuned for more information on the game and other all-star festivities.