That Time I Saw An All-Star Game


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I’m watching the All-Star Game as I write this, so forgive me a bit here. I’ve been lucky enough to see two All-Star games in my life, one in it’s entirety, the other in part.

In 1996, a 13 year old me went to Philadelphia’s Veterans Stadium for the All-Star festivities that year. The National League waxed the American League in that All-Star Game, with local product Mike Piazza of the New York Mets winning the MVP. The lone Phillies representative in that game, Ricky Bottalico, threw an inning in the game. In perhaps a little more interesting twist, I also went to the workout day and Home Run Derby. Pedro Martinez was on the Montreal Expos, Mark McGwire hit homers that reached the old orange and yellow seats in the left field upper deck, and Jerry Stackhouse played in the celebrity softball game. Barry Bonds beat Mark McGwire in the Home Run Derby that day. It was an amazing experience, at the time the second coolest thing I had been at besides the 1993 World Series.

My other All-Star experience was in 2010, at the AAA All-Star Game at Lehigh Valley, or at least the tail end of it. I got there late from work for the actual game, in the 7th inning in fact. Such is life in the campaign world. I did attend the entire Home Run Derby night though, one that included such current big leaguers as Alex Gordon of the Kansas City Royals (who hit some majestic homers out to left). Ironpig slugger Andy Tracy lost the home run derby final that night to Durham Bulls’ first baseman Dan Johnson, who is best known today for walking off the final day of the 2011 season for the Rays to make the post-season.

I hope to see another All-Star Game sometime soon. In recent years I haven’t been as into them, but tonight I’m really enjoying this one.

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