Jul 14, 2015, 3:45 PM EDT
CINCINNATI — It’s tough to imagine anything that happens tonight topping what happened during last night’s Home Run Derby, but this is the MLB All-Star Game, and you never really know what may transpire once you put all these great players together on one field. And then you add Pete Rose to the mix for tonight’s pregame ceremonies, and … well, it’s probably worth tuning in for that alone.
As for the game itself, Bryce Harper will be front-and-center, batting third and starting in right field. He’s in his third Midsummer Classic, but he’s still seeking his first hit, having gone 0-for-3 with a walk previously. You’ve got to believe he wants to change that tonight.
With Max Scherzer watching from the dugout, it’ll be Zack Greinke taking the mound for the National League, facing left-hander Dallas Keuchel of the Astros. Should be a lot of fun. Plenty of updates to come right here…
2015 MLB ALL-STAR GAME
AMERICAN LEAGUE vs. NATIONAL LEAGUE
Where: Great American Ball Park, Cincinnati
Gametime: 8 p.m. EDT
TV: Fox, MLB.tv
Radio: 92.7 FM, 94.3 FM, 980 AM, XM 89
Weather: Chance of storms, 77 degrees, Wind 11 mph out to CF
CF Mike Trout, LAA
3B Josh Donaldson, TOR
1B Albert Pujols, LAA
DH Nelson Cruz, SEA
RF Lorenzo Cain, KC
LF Adam Jones, BAL
C Salvador Perez, KC
2B Jose Altuve, HOU
SS Alcides Escobar, KC
(LHP Dallas Keuchel, HOU)
CF Andrew McCutchen, PIT
3B Todd Frazier, CIN
RF Bryce Harper, WSH
1B Paul Goldschmidt, AZ
C Buster Posey, SF
DH Anthony Rizzo, CHC
SS Jhonny Peralta, STL
LF Joc Pederson, LAD
2B D.J. LeMahieu, COL
(RHP Zack Greinke, LAD)
HP Tim Welke
1B Jerry Meals
2B Paul Schrieber
3B Ron Kulpa
LF James Hoye
RF Alan Porter
8:32 p.m. — And we are underway at long last after a lengthy but stirring pregame ceremony. They honored the Reds’ “Franchise Four,” which included Pete Rose, who took the field to a huge roar as expected. And then they introduced the four greatest living players, with Hank Aaron, Johnny Bench, Sandy Koufax and Willie Mays taking the field together to a humongous roar. And now the NL has taken the field and Zack Greinke has thrown a fastball to Mike Trout for strike one and the 86th Midsummer Classic is officially underway.
8:48 p.m. — Well, that’s certainly one way to get this thing going. Trout led off the game with a homer, an opposite-field shot on a 1-2 pitch from Greinke. It’s the first leadoff homer in the All-Star Game since Bo Jackson’s famous blast in Anaheim in 1989. And get this: Trout has now hit for the natural cycle in his first at-bat in each All-Star Game. In 2012, he singled in his first at-bat. In 2013, he doubled. In 2014, he tripled. And he just now homered. Which means next year, he’ll … uh, not sure how to figure that one out. The NL went down in order in the bottom of the first, with Bryce Harper working the count full before grounding to third. Harper hustled down the line but couldn’t quite beat Josh Donaldson’s throw. So it’s 1-0 AL after one.
9:09 p.m. — This game is now tied after two innings, thanks to a Donaldson throwing error that put a runner in scoring position and then a 2-out bloop single to right by Jhonny Peralta. The Cincinnati crowd, which has been booing anything and everything remotely connected to St. Louis the last 48 hours, actually cheered for that, perhaps not knowing how exactly to react. So it’s 1-1 after two.
9:27 p.m. — Oh, well, we won’t get a Bryce Harper-Felix Hernandez showdown tonight. That’s because King Felix retired the side in the top of the third, leaving Harper now to lead off the fourth, apparently vs. David Price. In other breaking news: Gerrit Cole struck out Mike Trout on one of the filthiest sliders you’ll ever see. Wow. Still 1-1 after three.
9:47 p.m. — Tough matchups for Harper tonight. He had to face a tough lefty in Keuchel in the first inning and now he had to face a really tough lefty in Price in the fourth inning. Price managed to get him to whiff at a 1-2 changeup down and away. So that leaves Harper 0-for-2 tonight and 0-for-4 with a walk in his All-Star Game career. Still 1-1 after four.
10:02 p.m. — The AL takes a 3-1 lead in the fifth thanks to a flurry of clutch hits off Clayton Kershaw of all people. Prince Fielder sent a 2-out RBI knock to left, then Lorenzo Cain added an RBI double to pad the lead. So the NL faces an uphill battle now, though Harper is going to get another at-bat in the sixth against Chris Archer.
10:28 p.m. — Actually, Harper had to face his third lefty of the night, the Orioles’ Zach Britton. He just missed a double down the left-field line and then wound up striking out on a 2-2 breaking ball down and away. So Harper ends up 0-for-3 with 2 strikeouts tonight. The NL has cut the lead to 3-2, though, thanks to McCutchen’s leadoff homer to open the sixth.
10:46 p.m. — Manny Machado delivers a big insurance run for the AL, doubling to deep right-center in the top of the seventh. Then Fielder added a sac fly for more insurance. That makes it 5-2 Americans and puts some added pressure on the NL to produce two runs over the final three innings against some very tough AL relievers.
10:58 p.m. — Still 5-2 after Dellin Betances pitches a scoreless bottom of the seventh. It’s looking tougher and tougher for the NL right now.
11:19 p.m. — The AL is trying to turn this into a rout. Brian Dozier goes deep in the top of the eighth to make it 6-2.
11:35 p.m. — That’ll do it. AL wins 6-3. They’ll have home-field advantage in the World Series for the third straight year.
FINAL NL EAST STANDINGS
ON THE RADIO
As ESPN-980 AM's Nats Insider, Mark makes daily appearances on the station's various shows. Here's the 2015 schedule (subject to change)...
MON: 12:45 p.m.
TUE: 2:30 p.m.
WED: 4:30 p.m.
THU: 2:30 p.m.
FRI: 5:30 p.m.
SAT: 10:30 a.m.
*All times Eastern. You can also listen to the station on 94.3 FM, 92.7 FM and online at ESPN980.com. Click here for past audio clips.
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