ALL STAR GAME RECAP: Expect the Unexpected
The time has come, the All Star game the magical time where the games greatest and fan favorites join together to play for their leagues. The purpose to win home field advantage for the respective leagues, kind of stupid to base on what should be an exhibition game. If you could get past the horrible commentary from my least favorite broadcasting duo of Joe Buck and Tim McCarver (especially McCarver) then it was actually a fun and enjoyable game. Held at the beautiful Kaufman Stadium in Kansas City, the National League broke all of the hearts of the media by defeating and humiliating the American League 8-0.
To be classy or not to be?
The Royals fans gave a very well deserving applause to Chipper Jones who is playing in his last All Star game. Then shortly later the Cardinals players all got large applause. Then the Royals franchise player and DH, Billy Butler got a reception as if Jesus Christ had returned from the beyond. But then came Robinson Cano who was booed so loudly that you would think he stole all of the BBQ sauce in KC. Many wonder why he is booed all the time after his display at the home run derby last night, the answer is a simple one. Cano as the captain of the AL Home Run derby team said that he would pick a Royal, then he did not. Billy Butler then being the only Royals All Star became idolized by all, fans cheering his name during Canos round at the Derby and during his at bat. So you are the judge, are the KC fans classy or not?
Justin Verlander the most dominant pitcher in baseball exited the first inning looking more like Jake Westbrook. He allowed five earned runs in the first off of a RBI double from Braun, bases clearing triple from Pablo Sandoval, and a RBI from Dan Uggla. The best part of the whole thing was that the NL showed that they are not a laughing stock like all of the ESPN, MLB Network, and FOX sports people made it seem. It was nice to shut everyone up right from the get co. Sadly, it had to come at the hands of my favorite pitcher and a classy guy Justin Verlander.
The Mighty Giants:
Going into the game I was appalled like most were that guys like Buster Posey and Pablo Sandoval were starting over Molina/Ruiz and David Wright. However the Giants were unbelievable tonight, Matt Cain pitched two shutout innings to start the game. Cabrera had two big hits including his homer. Sandoval had one of the three triples of the game and three RBI. Buster Posey also had a hit in his appearance (though Molina still should have started). IT was a great game by all but the men from the Bay proved themselves well tonight, that Melky Cabrera truly is something special!
Furcal showed he still had it with a great stop and throw to begin the bottom of the first. But Jeter was called safe on the play, still a good showing from Furcal though. Furcal showed that he still had the arm and it was a cool thing to see from our little spark plug! In his second at bat, Furcal launched a two out triple and was later driven in by Matt Holliday.
After all of the bitching that Tony La Russa got for starting Matt Cain over the fabled superhero R.A. Dickey, it proved to be a wise choice. Cain went two strong innings while never really being in trouble, unlike his counterpart Justin Verlander. You knew the media would be all over it because of the whole Dickey thing, but for once I think we are all in agreement that Tony La Russa made the right decision. Good job to Matt Cain one of the richest and classiest pitchers in the game!
Matt Holliday came in to pinch hit with two out and his teammate Rafael Furcal at third. He delivered with an RBI base hit and later scored after a two run home run from Melky Cabrera which made the game 8-0. It was nice to see Furcal, Beltran, and Holliday all making impacts on the game early on.
Bryce Harper and Mike Trout have been the talk of the All Star break and for a reason. Harper just 19 years old is the third youngest player to ever be an All Star and the youngest position player. Mike Trout may just be the best player in the game one day, he has all of the tools and is leading the AL in average and stolen bases. Harper came in and made a few foolish plays but did get on base with a walk, but will probably be remembered for missing the ball in the outfield. Trout looked good and got a hit off of mythical deity R.A Dickey as well as stole as base off of Carlos Ruiz. These kids really are the future of the game and though you could argue that Harper may not belong in the game, it was fun to watch! Trout ended his night 1-1 with a walk, single, and two stolen bases not to shabby for a 20 year old All Star. Harper ended his night 0-1 with a walk.
The N.L set a record with three triples hit in the game. One of those was from our very own Rafael Furcal the others came from Giant Pablo Sandoval and Brewer Ryan Braun. Pretty shabby for the team that was expected to lose by nearly all, maybe personal bias and love for the AL will diminish in the media, oh wait that will never happen!
Nearly every media outlet, every TV, Radio, and baseball writer expected the American League to win. I held no such beleif because I had faith in the NL. And my faith drove me well, the National League not only defeated the AL they crushed them out hitting, pitching, and playing them. After three straight wins from the NL, will the media ever give them a chance or will they always be the underdogs? This is one of the most frustrating things to me. Either way the NL won it, the pitchers looked great and the hitters equally excelled, great game by the National League!
Going out in style:
In TLR’s last supposed game as a manager he sure went out in class having his team clobber the American League. All of his questionable lineup and pitching decisions all went his way and he looked like the LaGenius that he is. Love him or hate him, it was nice to see him get a win for the NL and go out in style. Another cool moment was in the fifth when Clayton Kershaw was struggling on the mound, Dave Duncan went out on the mound to talk to him and was given a nice applause. Cool to see two legendary coaches go out with class and once again finish on top. Also this being Chipper Jones‘s final All Star Game it was a special moment for him as well, congrats to both of them. Chippers first at bat came in the sixth inning and he got a long standing ovation followed by a base hit. Very well deserved for a future Hall of Fame player and for the Hall of Fame manager La Russa!
How did the Cardinals do? :
Rafael Furcal- 1-3 with a triple and a run scored. Made some good plays including turning two double plays.
Carlos Beltran- 0-1, with a walk and a run scored.
Matt Holliday- 1-1 with a pinch hit RBI
David Freese- 0-1 K
Lance Lynn- Did not pitch
Player of the game:
Melky Cabrera- The former Royal came out right away hitting and had some big hits. He went 2-3 with a homer, single, two RBI, and two runs scored.
Cardinals Player- Rafael Furcal, he looked like he had a great time, had a triple and made some great plays!
The NL proved all of the biased baseball media wrong and showed that there talent is not only equal but greater in the All Star game. Once again the NL will have the home field advantage in the World Series for the fourth consecutive time, who knows how that will all play out but remember if it wasn’t for the advantage the Cardinals never would have had game 6 and who knows if they would have been able to win it all.