Dye in need of last push in Final Vote
White Sox slugger trailing Longoria in bid to join All-Star squad
CHICAGO -- There's less than 24 hours left in the Monster 2008 All-Star Game Final Vote ballot and what have the White Sox come up with now to get Jermaine Dye a spot on the American League All-Star team?
A better question might be: What haven't they come up with?
Prior to Wednesday night's game against Kansas City, the White Sox will unleash the aerial phase of their campaign, sending a message into the sky above Kauffman Stadium for all in the vicinity to see.
The last-ditch effort is in hopes of bumping Dye up from second place on the Final Vote ballot behind Tampa Bay's Evan Longoria. The Yankees' Jason Giambi sits in third place.
All three have collected more than 3.75 million votes apiece. The 33 million total ballots cast so far in this year's Final Vote easily surpass last year's record 23.1 million.
On Thursday morning the White Sox mascot, Southpaw, and the White Sox Chevy Pride Crew will canvass the Chicago Loop, visiting the Farmers' Market at Daley Plaza and local morning shows, lobbying fans for last-minute votes.
The White Sox teamed up with the San Francisco Giants on Tuesday to get Aaron Rowand a spot on the National League team. He still sits in fourth place.
Dye's teammates have rallied to his cause, wearing stickers that say "Vote JD" during batting practice.
"JD is definitely a guy who is deserving," said teammate Joe Crede, who has already earned his spot on the AL All-Star team. "Chicago is a big-market city, and we do have a big fan base up there in Chicago, and our fans have supported our players in the past with A.J. [Pierzynski] getting voted in as well as [Scott] Podsednik and hopefully JD will get the support everyone else has gotten in the past."
The online voting will continue until 4 p.m. CT on Thursday. There are two ways for fans to vote for the 2008 All-Star Game Final Vote -- online now at MLB.com, or on-the-go from their cell phones. Fans also can text the word "VOTE" to 36197 to have the All-Star Final Vote candidates sent to your phone. To vote for a specific player, simply reply with your choice. In Canada, fans should text the word "VOTE" to 88555. Standard rate text messaging rates apply -- please check with your mobile carrier for details.
David Just is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.