All-Star Game Threat: NL(43-41-2) @ AL(41-43-2)

Petco Park
Photo credit: Gary A. Vazquez-USA TODAY Sports

Hey! It’s the All-Star Game. That’s… fun. If you’re into it.

I’m not particularly into it, but so what? I won’t shit on it if anybody’s excited. I’ll watch it, if only to see Aaron Sanchez — subject of a recent controversy-stirring Joel Sherman piece in the New York Post — pitch in the fourth inning, and to see what else the Blue Jays’ representatives will get up to.

That’s really about it, but the game’s not really for me anyhow. I now look forward to the break as more of a respite from the work that I do — not that, y’know, I have trouble finding those when I am supposed to be working *COUGH* — than something I get all excited for. Yet, I must admit, I do still get filled with not a small amount excitement and wonder thinking about the All-Star Game that meant the most to me, which was the one here in Toronto, 25 years ago in 1991.

I think I mention this every year at this time, but I remember Ted Williams and Joe DiMaggio were honoured on the field, as it was the 50th anniversary of their 1941 seasons — in which Williams hit .407 and DiMaggio had his 56 game hitting streak. I remember Rod Carew and Hank Aaron were honourary captains for each league — or I at least remember it from looking through the program, which I stll have somewhere. And looking back at the rosters, it’s hard to fathom that so much Hall of Fame talent was gathered in that one place at that one time. In addition to the four legends I just mentioned, the game itself featured Craig Biggio, Andre Dawson, Tom Glavine, Tony Gwynn, Barry Larkin, Eddie Murray, Ryne Sandberg, and Ozzie Smith on the NL side. Plus Robbie Alomar, Wade Boggs, Roger Clemens (oh, is he not in the Hall?), Dennis Eckersley, Carlton Fisk, Ken Griffey Jr., Rickey Henderson, Paul Molitor, Kirby Puckett, and Cal Ripken Jr. for the AL.

How crazy is that? I still marvel. But the two people who I’m the most glad were there weren’t on the field. 

I was there with my dad and my grandfather. I remember getting nauseous from the stupendous amount of peanuts (which I’m allergic to) being eaten by the folks behind us way up in the nosebleeds by the left field foul pole, and missing George Bell — then of the Chicago Cubs — striking out. I remember my dad being more interested in the presence of President George Bush and Prime Minster Brian Mulroney, and the helicopters patrolling the skies overhead. I remember just how cool the whole experience was, and realize now how lucky I was to have had it with the two of them.

So how shitty would it be to the me that was there and loving every minute of it (well, mostly) if I took a giant dump on the whole thing, like I might have — and almost certainly did — in years past?

Extremely, I think. So fuck that!

Enjoy the game! And go get the Jays their World Series home field advantage!

Scuttlebutt

Yes, the AL is technically the home team. I guess they alternate every year, regardless of the park it’s played in? Yet another thing about this whole thing I don’t get. BUT NO, REALLY, IT’S GREAT.

TV: Sportsnet
Next Game(s): Friday @ Oakland, 10:05 PM ET
AL East Standings: BAL (-), BOS (2), TOR (2), NYY (7.5), TBR (17.5)
And now, the lineups…

American League All-Stars

Jose Altuve(R) 2B
Mike Trout(R) CF
Manny Machado(R) 3B
David Ortiz(L) DH
Xander Bogaerts(R) SS
Eric Hosmer(L) 1B
Mookie Betts(R) RF
Salvador Perez(R) C
Jackie Bradley Jr.(L) LF
Chris Sale LHP

National League All-Stars

Ben Zobrist(S) 2B
Bryce Harper(L) RF
Kris Bryant(R) 3B
Wil Myers(R) DH
Buster Posey(R) C
Anthony Rizzo(L) 1B
Marcell Ozuna(R) CF
Carlos Gonzalez(L) LF
Addison Russell(R) SS
Johnny Cueto RHP