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All-Star Game: National League Blows It

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First of all, what a beautiful stadium PNC Park is. To bad it&#39s in Pittsburgh.

Secondly, why would you bring Trevor Hoffman in as your closer when he has posted a 10.80 ERA in his first four All-Star appearances? Sure he ranks second on Major League Baseball’s career list with 460 saves, but baseball is all about numbers and match-ups isn&#39t it?

Coincidently, Michael Young’s two-run triple with two outs in the ninth inning off Hoffman was only the second time in All-Star Game history that a team won a game it was trailing (and was down to its final out).

And if you, like many, don&#39t know who Michael Young is, he was last year’s American League batting champion.

&#39He was throwing some fastballs, and we know the change is his signature pitch, but he was throwing some fastballs,&#39 said Young of the at-bat. &#39I was looking [for a] fastball first pitch [and] fouled it off. Thought he might throw a changeup [for a] second pitch [and] fouled that one off. Clearly my thinking was doing me no good, so I’m just going to try to see the ball and make some contact.&#39

Speaking of contact, it didn&#39t look like anyone was going to get any off National League starter Brad Penny of the Dodgers, until Vladimir Guerrero of the Angels hit a pitch at his shoulders out to the opposite field. That guy can hit any pitch out. Who wouldn&#39t have loved to see him in the Home Run Derby? He wouldn&#39t have taken a single pitch.

On the topic of dingers, 23-year-old David Wright’s homer off Kenny Rogers (who is 41) was the largest gap in age (18 years) between a batter and pitcher for an All-Star Game home run. It was previously set in 1959 in Los Angeles, when Frank Robinson (23) homered off Early Wynn (39).

&#39I got a lot of practice last night,&#39 said Wright referencing the Home Run Derby. &#39So after practice last night, [I] got a pitch I could handle my first at-bat.&#39

The young Met accounted for all the runs scored by the National League, with Carlos Beltran scoring the second run on a wild pitch after stealing third. Beltran also played the entire game, the first to do so since 1997, when three players did it: Ken Griffey Jr., Brady Anderson and Ray Lankford.

Yes, Brady Anderson and Ray Lankford were All-Stars.

Maybe if Jose Reyes had played, the National League would have scored three runs?

COED Writer