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Should the voting process change?

I hadn't planned on posting anymore AL MVP voting stories, but Jim Baumbach of Newsday has a fine piece on the voting process which determine the winner and the main target last week of Yankee fan hatred, Joe Cowley.

It is too long to post the entire article, but well worth reading.


The e-mail inbox of Chicago sportswriter Joe Cowley has been flooded ever since the American League MVP announcement earlier this week, and a few of the 500 messages have included some downright disgusting words from Yankees fans.

A few choice e-mails that made Cowley cringe:

"Hope your cancer comes back."

"Hope you have a short life."

What did Cowley do to deserve such hatred? The White Sox beat reporter for the Chicago Sun-Times put Derek Jeter sixth on his MVP ballot - lower than any other voter. It didn't cost Jeter the award, but it quickly made Cowley the poster boy for the anti-Jeter vote.

"People want to write stuff like that, e-mail stuff like that, that's fine. That's part of it. It's no big deal," he said. "But when you read stuff like that, you want to step back and remind these people this is a baseball game."

Some sports editors believe this is only the latest example why reporters should not vote for awards such as MVP and Cy Young. They don't believe a reporter should be a household name because of his vote.

"I wouldn't want one of my reporters in that position," Los Angeles Times sports editor Randy Harvey said.

Cowley's week included many interviews with reporters and radio shows, including a contentious exchange with WFAN's Mike and the Mad Dog. All because of his vote for an award, not his job as a reporter.

"Voting on awards like this puts reporters in the position of making the news, and that's not our job," said Tom Jolly, sports editor of The New York Times. "Our job is to report on the news, not to make it."

And they're not the only sports editors who feel that way. This is the 75th year baseball writers have voted for the MVP, but the pool of voters clearly is declining.

Read the rest here.