By Anthony McClean, Editor In Chief Emeritus NEW HAVEN (BASN) —...
All-Game Revisited: American League Bests National All-Stars 7-6.
Just when it appeared the National League would secure home-field advantage in this year’s World Series, the American League All-Stars rallied from a four-run deficit to defeat the National League All-Stars 7-6.
With two outs in the bottom of the eighth, Blue Jays’ Verson Wells’ RBI single to left field set-up a game winning two-run homerun to right by Hank Blalock of the Royals. However, Garret Anderson of the Angels was named the All-Star game’s Most Valuable Player (MVP).
Anderson, who also defeated Albert Pujols in the Home Run Derby final, went 3 for 4, including a two-run blast to centerfield to cut the N.L. lead to 5-3.
In the bottom of the seventh with two outs, Yankees’ slugger Jason Giambi off Billy Wagner (Astros) of hit a solo homer for the A.L. All-Stars. The N.L. lead 6-4 heading into the eighth inning.
In the ninth, Dodgers pitcher, Eric Gagne was hit hard. Gagne, who in 31 save chances has not blown a save in the regular season thus far, allowed Blalock’s game-winning homer, and was tagged for three runs on three hits.
Among some memorable pitching performances was that of Roger Clemens (Yankees). In what may have been his ninth and final All-Star appearance, Clemens, at age 41, pitched in the third inning striking out two batters without allowing a hit.
In the bottom of the second, the American League took a 1-0 lead when Toronto’s Carlos Delgado launched a single off Phillies pitcher, Randy Wolfto left field. Ichiro Suzuki of Seattle scored from second.
With the American League up 1-0 after Blue Jays’ Carlos Delgado’s RBI single off Randy Wolf (Phillies) in the bottom of the second, it was only a matter of time before the N.L. began heating up.
The National League came roaring back in the top of the fifth scoring five runs. Mariners pitcher Shigetoshi Hasegawa (2/3-inning, 4 runs, 3 hits) allowed the first three batters he faced to reach on base. One of those hitters was the Rockies’ Todd Helton (Rockies), who drilled the first pitch he saw out of the park for a two-run homer to put the N.L. head 2-1. Andruw Jones (Braves) hit a 2-RBI ground rule double to left, and an RBI single from Pujols’ put the N.L. ahead 5-1
Following Anderson’s two-run blast in the bottom of the sixth, Jones, who hit a 2-RBI double in the fifth, launched a solo homer in the top of the seventh to put the N.L. up 6-3.
A failed bullpen could not hold on to the lead and secure home field advantage for the National League Pennant Champions in October.