1997 Major League Baseball All-Star Game

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1997 Major League Baseball All-Star Game
1997MLBAllStarGame.png
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
National League 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 1 3 0
American League 0 1 0 0 0 0 2 0 0 3 7 0
Date July 8, 1997
Venue Jacobs Field
City Cleveland, Ohio
Managers
MVP Sandy Alomar, Jr. (CLE)
Attendance 44,916
First pitch Larry Doby
Television Fox
TV announcers Joe Buck, Tim McCarver and Bob Brenly
Radio CBS
Radio announcers John Rooney, Jerry Coleman and Jeff Torborg

The 1997 Major League Baseball All-Star Game was the 68th playing of the midsummer classic between the all-stars of the American League (AL) and National League (NL), the two leagues comprising Major League Baseball. The game was held on July 8, 1997, at Jacobs Field in Cleveland, the home of the Cleveland Indians of the American League. The game resulted in the American League defeating the National League 3-1, the game marked the fifth time the All-Star Game was held in Cleveland and first since 1981. It was also the first All-Star game held at Jacobs Field, which opened three years earlier.

Rosters[edit]

Players in italics have since been inducted into the National Baseball Hall of Fame.

Game[edit]

Umpires[edit]

Home Plate Larry Barnett
First Base Gerry Davis
Second Base Drew Coble
Third Base Jeff Kellogg
Left Field Terry Craft
Right Field Wally Bell

Starting lineups[edit]

National League American League
Order Player Team Position Order Player Team Position
1 Craig Biggio Astros 2B 1 Brady Anderson Orioles LF
2 Tony Gwynn Padres DH 2 Alex Rodriguez Mariners SS
3 Barry Bonds Giants LF 3 Ken Griffey Jr. Mariners CF
4 Mike Piazza Dodgers C 4 Tino Martinez Yankees 1B
5 Jeff Bagwell Astros 1B 5 Edgar Martínez Mariners DH
6 Larry Walker Rockies RF 6 Paul O'Neill Yankees RF
7 Ken Caminiti Padres 3B 7 Cal Ripken, Jr. Orioles 3B
8 Ray Lankford Cardinals CF 8 Iván Rodríguez Rangers C
9 Jeff Blauser Braves SS 9 Roberto Alomar Orioles 2B
Greg Maddux Braves P Randy Johnson Mariners P

Game summary[edit]

Tuesday, July 8, 1997 8:29 pm (ET) at Jacobs Field in Cleveland, Ohio
Team 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
National League 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 1 3 0
American League 0 1 0 0 0 0 2 0 - 3 7 0
WP: José Rosado (1-0)   LP: Shawn Estes (0-1)   Sv: Mariano Rivera (1)
Home runs:
NL: Javy López (1)
AL: Edgar Martínez (1), Sandy Alomar, Jr. (1)

The American League jumped out to a 1-0 lead in the 2nd inning led by a home run by Edgar Martínez of the Seattle Mariners. No one would score after that until the 7th inning when Javy López of the Atlanta Braves would tie the game with a home run of his own. However, in the bottom of the 7th, Sandy Alomar, Jr. of the Cleveland Indians hit a two-run home run to give the American League the lead and the win, as they held on to defeat the National League 3-1 and Alomar became the first player in All-Star Game history to win All-Star Game MVP as a member of the host team.

The loudest ovation of the All-Star Game, which came early in the player introductions, was reserved for Kenny Lofton, whom the Indians had traded to the Atlanta Braves prior to the start of the 1997 season. Lofton was on the National League roster, but was injured and did not play. Also in the pregame ceremonies, Albert Belle, who was representing the Chicago White Sox, was booed for leaving the Indians as a free agent the previous winter.

Unlike past years, the performance of O Canada, this year by the McAuley Boys, was not televised. Instead, the Fox network, airing its first All-Star Game, went into a commercial break, resulting in angry phone calls from Canadian television viewers, the Canadian National Anthem was later shown on tape delay after the game in the Cleveland area. Country star LeAnn Rimes sang the National Anthem following the commercial break. To commemorate the 50th anniversary of baseball's breaking of the color barrier, the ceremonial first pitch featured former Indian Larry Doby, the first African-American player to play in the American League.

One of the more colorful moments in All-Star Game history occurred during an at bat with Randy Johnson of the Seattle Mariners pitching and Larry Walker of the Colorado Rockies at the plate. The teams of the two former Montreal Expos teammates had faced each other about one month prior. However, when Johnson started on June 12, Walker chose not to play, explaining that, "I faced Randy one time in spring training and he almost killed me."[2] In this All-Star Game, Walker batted against Johnson, who theatrically threw over his head. Ever adaptable, Walker placed his batting helmet backwards and switched sides in the batters' box to stand right-handed for one pitch, he ended the at bat by drawing a walk.[3] The incident momentarily drew mirth and laughter from players in both dugouts, fans and announcers, and comparisons to Johnson pitching against John Kruk in the 1993 All-Star Game, in which he also threw over his head.[4] In spite of garnering a reputation of avoiding Johnson,[5] Walker batted .393 (11 hits in 28 at bats) against him in his career,[6] nearly double the rate of all left-handed batters at .199.[7]

After the game, Major League Baseball CEO Paul Beeston presented Alomar with the All-Star Game MVP Award in lieu of the Commissioner of Baseball, who would not be named until after the next All-Star Game, when then-Chairman of the Executive Committee Bud Selig was officially named Commissioner.

This was the last All-Star Game in which the Milwaukee Brewers were represented as a team from the American League, the Brewers switched over to the National League for the 1998 season as a result of the expansion franchises in Arizona and Tampa.

Footnotes and references[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e f Player declined or was unable to play.
  2. ^ Associated Press (June 12, 1997). "Walker will not face Johnson". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved February 4, 2017. 
  3. ^ Cut4Staff (July 8, 2016). "Today in All-Star Game history: Larry Walker flips helmet, bats right-handed". MLB.com Cut 4. Retrieved January 7, 2017. 
  4. ^ Baker, Chris (July 9, 1997). "Johnson's wild toss amuses Walker, fans". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved January 7, 2017. 
  5. ^ Eisenberg, John; Kubatko, Roch (July 9, 1997). "Relieved Walker walks away from hairy at-bat vs. Johnson Kruk-like wild pitch keeps Rockie on toes". Baltimore Sun. Retrieved January 7, 2017. 
  6. ^ Elias Sports Bureau, Inc. (June 11, 2005). "Elias says .." ESPN.com. Retrieved February 4, 2017. 
  7. ^ "Randy Johnson career pitching splits". Baseball-Reference.com. Retrieved January 7, 2017. 

External links[edit]