05/21/09 1:26 AM ET
Nominate the All-Stars Among Us
MLB.com and People team up to honor unsung heroes
By Mark Newman / MLB.com
Hopefully that has your attention, because this only takes a few minutes and could be one of the most rewarding things you've done lately.
These are the final hours of the nomination phase for the All-Stars Among Us campaign, a presentation of People Magazine and Major League Baseball. We are looking for "everyday All-Stars" who have gone above and beyond to serve their community, and one person representing each MLB club is being sent to the Midsummer Classic.
One of those also will be featured in People Magazine.
Simply upload a picture of your nominee (age 16 or older) and write in 50 words or less the reason he or she is an everyday All-Star. Maybe it's someone who has helped families cope during the recession. Maybe it's someone in your own household who gives her or his time as a volunteer at local events. Maybe it's a friend who rescues abandoned pets or devotes countless hours to helping troubled teens at a shelter.
"We've been really excited by the feedback we've gotten from our fans," MLB spokesman Matt Bourne said Thursday. "The number of submissions has really exceeded what People magazine expected. This is a way to recognize the remarkable accomplishments of our fans across the country."
The best nominees will be for everyone to see in the next voting phase of the campaign. But you might want to know what kind of submissions are coming from your fellow citizens, and Bourne said:
"We're getting people who have raised a significant amount of money for charity, who have made great sacrifices to dedicate their lives to charitable initiatives. People who have acted selflessly to help other people in need."
Everyone knows someone worthy of a nomination. There are too many possible areas of consideration to list here. Every community is built on the backs of special people who would love this kind of special treatment.
Submit your nominations, including the person's favorite Major League team, and then everyone will be invited to vote at peopleallstars.com for the finalists from June 8-24. One winner will be chosen as a representative of every club, a nice opportunity to have someone recognized at pro sports' most famous All-Star event. Again, it doesn't take much time.
Right about now, a lot of people probably already have popped into your head. You know those special people with all your heart. Share this "All-Stars Among Us" campaign with friends in your community, decide on the most deserving nominees, and then start a major grassroots campaign if your nominee is a finalist. Leave comments here on your nominees, and that likely will spur others to nominate before the deadline.
Meanwhile, vote for your favorite players with the 2009 All-Star Game Sprint Online Ballot at MLB.com and all 30 sites, and look for Walt Disney Pictures G-Force All-Star Game ballots at Major League and Minor League ballparks.
The 80th Major League Baseball All-Star Game will be televised nationally by FOX Sports, in Canada by Rogers Sportsnet and Sportsnet HD and televised around the world by Major League Baseball International, with pregame ceremonies beginning at 8 p.m. ET. ESPN Radio will provide exclusive national radio coverage, while MLB.com will provide extensive online coverage.
Mark Newman is enterprise editor of MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.