American League Defeats National League in MLB’s 88th All-Star Game


(Rhona Wise / EPA)

Todd Potter, Sports Editor

On July 11, 2017, the 88th MLB All-Star Game was held at Marlins Park in Florida.

  Fan-favorite players from the 30 teams were chosen to play in the game through the process of online voting, including the Los Angeles DodgersCody Bellinger, Clayton Kershaw, Justin Turner, Corey Seager, and Kenley Jansen.  For 28 players, this was their first time being an All-Star.  

  Before the game, Latin-born members of the Hall of Fame were honored for their contributions to the sport including Juan Marichal, Luis Aparicio, Pedro Martinez, Rod Carew, Tony Perez, Orlando Cepeda, Roberto Alomar, Roberto Clemente, and Ivan Rodriguez, who will be inducted into the Hall later this month.

  Both the American League and the National League teams had their chances to score early in the game, especially in the third inning, but neither team scored.  The Cleveland Indian Jose Ramirez’s single and stolen base gave the American League a man on second but they failed to score.  The New York YankeesDellin Betances threw two wild pitches and two walks, putting the National League in a situation with the bases loaded and two outs, but Betances got out of the inning.

  In the top of the fifth, Alex Wood of the Dodgers, who was playing for Kershaw because Kershaw pitched on Sunday, gave up a double down the line to Baltimore Orioles Jonathan Schoop and a bloop single to Miguel Sanó of the Minnesota Twins, giving the American League a 1-0 lead.

  In the top of the sixth, the St. Louis CardinalsYadier Molina took a picture of Nelson Cruz of the Seattle Mariners and Joe West, the umpire behind the plate because it was West’s 5000th game umpiring and Cruz wanted to document the moment.

  “I’ve never seen that before – ever.  That’s the first time I ever think I’ve been speechless on a field,” said West after the game.  

  In the bottom of the sixth, Molina hit a home run, tying the game at one.  

  After this, both teams were quiet offensively until the ninth inning.

  Jansen struck out the side in the top half of the ninth despite giving up a single and a stolen base to the Oakland AthleticsYonder Alonso.

  A walk and a passed ball in the bottom of the ninth led to Molina on second base.  Another walk and a flyout led to the Arizona Diamondbacks Jake Lamb on second and Molina on third, but the American League got out of the inning.

  This tie didn’t last long, with Robinson Cano of the Mariners hitting a home run, which gave the American League the lead.  In the bottom of the tenth, the National League team couldn’t respond, losing to the American League 2-1.  

  Cano received the Ted Williams MVP award for his home run in the tenth inning.

  “It’s always good to be able to accomplish something great, especially in front of my family,” Cano said. “As a kid, you watch [Ken] Griffey and all those guys come to the All-Star Game and win MVPs, and you want to get that feeling.”

  This game was the first time since 2002  when the result of the game did not decide which league will have home-field advantage in the World Series. This allowed the players to enjoy themselves and reflect on what their teams have accomplished this season and what their teams need to work on in the second half without the pressure to perform as if it was a regular game.  

  Now the team with the best record in the regular season will have home field advantage in the World Series, meaning that each game in the regular season is more important because the All-Star Game is played for the fans now.