Finally!!! The National League has won an All-Star Game!!!
As a Cubs fan, it's been brutal to watch the American League win all these years. I guess it's revenge for all the times when the NL would clobber the AL in these competitions. But I wasn't around then, so the AL's streak really started to bother me. I'm just glad it's over.
Some notes and observations:
½. I just reviewed the videos of the player introductions. Which by the way, are my favorite part of the entire thing. Loudest cheers, obviously went to Jered Weaver and Torii Hunter (MGR Mike Scioscia got lots of cheers too). But next to the Halos pair was Alex Rodriguez, and even he knew what was coming next. So from the loudest cheers to the loudest boos, ARod goes out after being recognized, and just smiles as he steps away from the line. At least he wasn't ashamed of it. He knew what was coming. Give him credit for that and for showing he can take the heat. Although you have to figure that somewhere, Dallas Braden's grandmother is screaming "Stick It ARod" at her television set. Boos went to everybody: Red Sox, Rangers (except for Vladdy...the fans cheered him), Yankees, Dodgers. Dead silence when they introduced Athletics pitchers Andrew Bailey and Trevor Cahill. I guess the fans got tired booing five Yankees.
1. The starting pitchers really set the tone for this game. Both Ubaldo Jimenez and David Price were just utterly dominant. That Josh Johnson can throw it too. Jeez. It was probably smart to have JJ throw two innings. Runs were going to be at a premium.
2. Hong-Chih Kuo!!! What was that???
3. Again, it was good to see relievers get in the game early, or at least finish off an inning for somebody else (see Roy Halladay for Matt Capps).
4. That Valverde guy can bring it too. He made everybody look bad swinging. No wonder the Tigers are going to win the division. I don't think any team can figure him out, not the way he's throwing anyway.
5. No home runs for the second year in a row. Wow, it really is the year of the pitcher.
6. You had to feel bad for many of the hitters. Yeah, it was probably hard to see with the sun setting and the twilight and all, but if I was a hitter, I'd probably not want to go out there if I knew that I'd have to face Jimenez one inning, Johnson the next (see Derek Jeter), or any other fireballer tonight. I think they said that one pitch Price threw was at 100 mph.
7. Great outfield defense from Ichiro, Braun, and Byrd. Not so much from Matt Holliday. You could have had that one!!! Bet Adam Wainwright would have been ticked at his own teammate if that run would have scored?
8. Thank you Brian McCann!!!
8½. Thank you Marlon Byrd!!!
9. Nice to see Chris Young, Michael Bourn, and Byrd celebrating in the outfield the way the Cubs outfielders do after a game.
That's it for now. I have to get to sleep.
Until tomorrow everyone.