Despite a good performance by the Tampa Bay Rays All-Stars, the American League still lost the 2010 All-Star Game last night by a score of 3-1 to the National League, who won the annual event for the first time since 1996 – the 2002 All-Star Game ended in a tie. The win gives the National League home field advantage in the World Series. In addition to many exciting moments over the past week, the All-Star event also experienced some sadness.
The game opened with a moment of silence for George Steinbrenner, owner of the New York Yankees. He died the morning of the game at the age of 80. Under Steinbrenner’s ownership. the Yankees won 11 pennants and 7 World Series. Fans may have disagreed with his tactics, but few can deny that Steinbrenner had a tremendous influence on Major League Baseball. Many will miss him.
The All-Star event for many started on Monday night with the Home Run Derby. David Ortiz (aka Big Papi), the Boston Red Sox’s famous slugger, participated for the fourth time and won the event. Milwaukee Brewers hitter Corey Hart highlighted the first round with 13 homers, but had nothing left for the next one.
After two rounds, Florida Marlins' Hanley Ramirez and Ortiz were tied with 21 home runs each. In the third and final round. Big Papi hit another 11 home runs to win, which tied the final round record set by Bobby Abreu in 2005. Afterwards, an exuberant Ortiz lofted the trophy over his head. His large smile said it all, and set the scene for the main event the next day.
The All-Star Game provided fans with an exhibition of outstanding pitching. Tampa Bay’s David Price started the game for the American League, and Colorado’s Ubaldo Jimenez took the mound for the National League. All told, the American League pitchers dished up seven hits, while the winning team gave up six. The National League struck out eight batters, and the American League pitchers struck out 10 in a losing effort. In the top of the ninth, Detroit’s Jose Valverde struck out the three batters he faced.