Quite the All Star Game wasn’t it.
It was fun to watch, pretty exciting, fairly boring, a little disappointing but in the end a great baseball game.
The play of the game belongs to the rightful MVP Carl Crawford.
This picture on the front page of MLBlogs.com captures the essence of teh spectacular play CC made to rob Brad Hawpe of a sure fire home run. The catch saved the game for the AL, but it was Curtis Granderson that set up the victory. He used his speed to motor around the bases and slide in with a triple. He would then score to put the AL up 4-3.
Crawford’s catch was reminded me of another remarkable play in an all star game. It was back in 2002 in Milwaukee’s Miller Park when Torii Hunter leaped over the wall to rob Barry Bonds of a jack.
I was just 13 at the time and I remember watching the game at my grandma’s house. I was going nuts went Hunter flew through the air to bring the ball back in. I loved seeing the replay over and over because I like teh cartoon dude on the wall. Its pretty fitting that Hunter made the great play right in front of the annimated baseball player. They are almost in the exact same pose within inches of each other. Even to this day I still believe it was one of the coolest baseball plays I have ever seen.
While the game itself could be considered a classic, it surely wasn’t one for the ages. It was the shortest played ASG since 1988. A stat I really enjoy. The 2:36 minute game was much shorter than the 15 inning marathon played last year at old Yankee Stadium. Tip your cap to the American League pitching for speeding up the acceleration of the game. By retiring 18 consecutive NL batters from the 2nd to 8th inning. It was kind of embarrassing to see these big name players get mowed down like they did. Whats even more embarrassing were my personal pre-game predictions.
I said Albert Pujols would rock the stage going 3-3 with a homerun and earn MVP honors. Prince Albert pulled the complete opposite by going 0-3 with an error at first base.
I was proud of Jason Bay. He started the game with a nice rip in the first inning.
While I was dissapointed in the NL loss I was wearing the Jason Bay shirt. I was the only Red Sox “fan” in the restaurant. There were Indians fans, Tigers fans and Yankees fans. Even by wearing an AL team’s shirt I was the only one cheering for the National League.
I was rather miffed at the way Charlie Manuel managed the game for the NL. Prior to the game I wa smad that so many Philies made the team. It was the same for the Rays but I figure since their own managers are managing the game, the bias factor sets in. But Manuel did not do a good job with the rotation of players. Justin Upton, Ryan Zimmerman and Brad Hawpe were all reserves but still managed to bat twice in the game. Why not substitute another player and give them a whack. I’m mostly talking about Freddy Sanchez. I would sure with his proven All-Star game experience and being a familiar face with Manuel he would at least get in the game for one at bat. He did not. Zach Duke did not get in the game either. I kind of saw that one coming, but at least give Freddy a shot.
Other disappointments came from the starting pitching. Halladay was solid but still had trouble getting out of the first. Lincemcum was a dare I say disaster. Being the dominating pitcher that he is he allowed AL hitters to damage him for a run. he was wild throwing the ball all over the place. Molina was solid behind the plate just keeping the balls in front of him. Lincy even hit Derek Jeter. It was not a good night for “The Freak” Luckily for him he is still on track for another stellar regular season.
What I love most about the baseball All-Star game is all of the though and discussion that goes in to it. I mean come on. Every one on these blog has their own comments and opinions about this one game. Its fantastic and shows that it truly is about the fans. You take any other sports and their All Star games are not as fun.
The NBA All Star game is more of a celebrity showcase. With all the stars lining up to see the game and spend time in the host city. Plus trouble always seems to brew. Pacman Jones had his legendary “make it rain” episode in the ASG in Las Vegas. Plus the game itself is so unpredictable. Actually I take that back. The one thing you know is that there is sure to be many dunks, mid range shots, and no defense. The end scores are astronomical and so high.
Even though I am starting to get back to watching hockey more and more, their All-Star game is just as brutal as the NBAs. Hockey is an exciting sport and is very fun to watch. But the All-Star game, quite frankly is not. Its all about the offense here to, with no defensive poweress at all. Double digits goal totals always occur and the puck flies at will. Plus the game is broadcasted on Versus. Nobody watches Versus. It is hard for the NHL to gain more fans and notoriety when the games are shoved away on Versus.
The NFL ASG is just plain irrelevant. The players just use it as an all expense paid vacation to Hawaii. One of the biggest reasons I personally dislike the Pro Bowl is that it is always played in the same stadium out there in Hawaii. I love the rotation of the All Star games. Its great to bolster the economy of different cities and it puts that host city on display for the world to see.
The Baseball All-Star game is the most like an actual game which makes it the most fun to watch.