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Instant Runoff on All-Star, MVP and other non-governmental ballots

August, 2001

The Center recently compiled the votes from the 2001 Major League Baseball (MLB) All Star game to show how plurality voting declares winners with far less than a majorty of votes, as well as to help us determine whether we should start an effort to reach out to MLB (and other leagues that use plurarlity voting) about different voting methods, particularly instant runoff voting. Such a campaign could extend to votes for “most valuable player” (although most leagues already use another rank-order system, the “Borda” count, for such elections), entertainment polling on internet sites and other elections and reader/viewer polls where there are typically more than two options.

Below are some of the more telling results from the 2001 MLB All Star game vote. As you can see below, players were winning with 25% of the total vote. Given that some teams encourage “voting the home team slate”, plurality voting gives players from these teams a better chance, as they don’t need a majority to win.  Players from popular teams also had the potential to be spoilers for their teammates, such as Batista/Ripken (both receiving votes for top third baseman, American League). Any suggestions of other elections/polls that might be good for outreach would be greatly appreciated. This includes Internet opinion polls and balloting for major league sports MVPs and All Stars.

Please e-mail us at [email protected] with suggestions.

 

National League All-Star Game Votes

 

First Base
Player

Votes

Percentage of Total

Helton (Colorado)

1,166,838

26.53%

McGwire (St. Louis)

919,636

20.91%

Bagwell (Houston)

632,114

14.37%

Grace (Arizona)

387,768

8.82%

Snow (San Francisco)

281,156

6.39%

Klesko (San Diego)

257,972

5.87%

Casey (Cincinnati)

255,407

5.81%

Sexson (Milwaukee)

182,478

4.15%

Zeile (New York)

166,738

3.79%

Stairs (Chicago)

148,156

3.37%

 

 

Total

4,398,263

100%

Second Base
Player

Votes

Percentage of Total

Kent (San Francisco) 979,744

23.46%

Biggio (Houston) 693,449

16.60%

Bell (Arizona) 480,174

11.50%

Walker (Colorado) 432,331

10.35%

Alfonzo (New York) 355,427

8.51%

Vina (St. Louis) 315,557

7.56%

Young (Chicago) 248,574

5.95%

Reese (Cincinnati) 246,145

5.89%

Vidro (Montreal) 214,709

5.14%

Veras (San Diego) 210,636

5.04%

Total 4,176,746

100%

American League All-Star Game Votes
Third Base
Player

Votes

Percentage of Total

Ripken (Baltimore) 1,108,383

21.62%

Bell (Seattle) 1,063,772

20.75%

Glaus (Anaheim) 1,039,155

20.27%

Brosius (New York) 511,518

9.98%

Fryman (Cleveland) 344,150

6.71%

Batista (Baltimore) 300,193

5.86%

Koskie (Minnesota) 242,008

4.72%

Caminiti (Texas) 234,069

4.57%

Chavez (Oakland) 151,643

2.96%

Randa (Kansas City) 132,144

2.58%

Total 5,127,035 100%
Shortstop
Player

Votes

Percentage of Total

Rodriguez (Texas) 1,352,910 25.95%
Jeter (New York) 1,088,985 20.89%
Guillen (Seattle) 745,077 14.29%
Vizquel (Cleveland) 685,930 13.16%
Garciaparra (Boston) 436,699 8.38%
Guzman (Minnesota) 249,284 4.78%
Tejada (Oakland) 224,436 4.30%
Gil (Anaheim) 179,875 3.45%
Gonzalez (Toronto) 142,726 2.74%
Sanchez (Kansas City) 108,036 2.07%
Total 5,213,958 100%

 
 
 
 
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Copyright © 2001 The Center for Voting and Democracy
6930 Carroll Ave. Suite 901    Takoma Park, MD  20912
(301) 270-4616 ____ [email protected]