On the heels of possibly the best Home Run Derby we’ve ever seen, the 2019 MLB All-Star Game kicked off on a somber note, as the late Angels pitcher Tyler Skaggs was honored with a moment of silence. Angels’ teammates Mike Trout and Tommy La Stella (who was replaced by Brandon Lowe due to injury) also honored Skaggs, both by wearing his number 45.
Dodgers pitcher Hyun-jin Ryu took the hill for the NL, and went up against the Astros Justin Verlander. The American League struck first in the game when Astro’ outfielder Michael Brantley hit a double, sending his teammate, third baseman Alex Bregman, in to score.
We saw scoreless innings after the first, but in the 5th inning, Twins shortstop Jorge Polanco drove in Yankee catcher Gary Sanchez with a double to make it 2-0.
A home run by Rockies outfielder Charlie Blackman in the 6th had the National Legaue on the board, but the AL would come firing right back in the 7th. Red Sox shortstop Xander Bogaerts drove in Athletics third baseman Matt Chapman on a double play, and later in the inning Rangers outfielder Joey Gallo hit a home run to make the score 4-1 heading into the 8th inning.
In the 8th, Home Run Derby winner, and Mets first baseman Pete Alonso came to the plate with the bases juiced. Alonso hit a ball up the middle that got past Yankees second baseman Gleyber Torres, driving in Brewers catcher Yasmani Grandal, and Rockies outfielder David Dahl to make it a 4-3 game.
That would be all the scoring for this game, however, as Yankee closer Aroldis Chapman entered in the 9th, striking out the side, and getting the save for the AL’s 7th straight All-Star Game win.
Yankee pitcher Masahiro Tanaka received the win, with Dodgers ace Clayton Kershaw getting the loss. Indians pitcher Shane Bieber took home the All-Star Game MVP honors. Bieber was inserted into the game in the 5th inning.
Bieber, who was a replacement for the Rangers Mike Minor, came into the game to relieve White Sox pitcher Lucas Giolito. Bieber struck out the side consisting of Cubs catcher Willson Contreras, Diamondbacks second baseman Ketel Marte, and Braves outfielder Ronald Acuna Jr.
I’m in the minority when I say I enjoyed when the All-Star Game dictated home field advantage in the World Series. Ever since they got rid of that, I haven’t really paid much attention to the game. However, with an incredible Home Run Derby the night before, and a close, action packed game, I believe this year we saw one of the best Midsummer Classic we’ve had in a long time.
Photo source: thebiglead.com
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