CI Recap (All-Star Game) – NL 6, AL 8: Baez Singles to Lead Off, Contreras Hits First-Pitch Homer
In a game that involved several long bombs, Willson Contreras made a name for himself. On the very first pitch he faced in his first All-Star appearance, he hit a laser to left field off of Blake Snell to start the scoring for the NL. With that shot, Contreras became the first ever Cubs catcher to homer in an All-Star Game.
Javy Baez also got into the mix, hitting a 99.4 mph Chris Sale offering into center for a single to lead off the game (Box score).
I really, really love how the All-Star Game has changed recently. They incorporated more on-field player interviews, which did nothing but add to the fun of the game. This is how it should be, because fans get to experience how the players generally operate in a game.
We heard Francisco Lindor talk smack to Eugenio Suarez about getting hit by a pitch, and learned that Charlie Blackmon is pretty lonely out in center field. If you have not watched the Midsummer Classic recently, I highly recommend you do so next season.
MLB does a great job at marketing their players during this game. If only they could do so during the rest of the year.
Why the NL Lost
The National League simply did not hit enough home runs to keep pace with the American League in what essentially turned out to be a long-form version of the home run derby. Only one run was not driven in by a home run, and it was on a sacrifice fly in the top of the 10th that allowed the American League to extend its lead to 8-5.
Ryan “Grown Man Named Scooter” Gennett hit a two-run bomb in the bottom of the 9th with one out off of Edwin Diaz. This tied the game at 5-5 and felt like it would be a huge momentum swing for the National League. Unfortunately, Ross Stripling was unable pitch a clean 10th, as he allowed Alex Bregman and George Springer to hit back-to-back homers.
Stats that Matter
- Javy went 1-for-3 with a single to lead off the game for the NL
- Contreras went 1-for-2 with the aforementioned solo shot
- The 10 home runs hit was an All-Star game record
The American League won its sixth straight All-Star Game and Bregman won the MVP.
The Cubs start the second half of the season back at Wrigley Field on Thursday as they welcome the Cardinals for a five-game series. Kyle Hendricks will take the bump for the Cubs, while we don’t know who will take the for the Cardinals. The game will begin at 6:05 CT and will be broadcast on ESPN.