The American League All-Stars led by game MVP Giancarlo Stanton edged out the National League Tuesday, 3-2, in a pitching duel. The star-studded streets of Los Angeles welcomed the biggest names MLB has to offer for the Midsummer Classic!
The hurlers on the mound dominated on both sides with ever run coming in one of two half-innings. Shane McClanahan struggled to start off the game for the American League, giving up four hits. Mookie Betts brang Ronald Acuña Jr. home on a single, and Paul Goldschmidt knocked a 415-foot solo shot to left-centerfield.
Both Alek Manoah and Emmanuel Clase struck out the side as the American League held the National League to only one hit for the remaining eight innings.
Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher Tony Gonsolin lost the lead for the National League in the top of the fourth. Giancarlo Stanton hit a 457-foot bomb bringing home José Ramírez, and Byron Buxton followed with a long ball of his own, making the two batters only the seventh pair to go back-to-back at the All-Star Game.
All-Star veterans and first timers alike were all smiles, soaking in the Southern California sunshine and playing the game they love.
“I love to pitch,” first-time All-Star Joe Mantiply explains. “You never know if this is the only one [All-Star Game] I’ll ever get to do.”
Baseball has long been known as "America’s pastime," but the All-Star rosters highlighted the game's global popularity with 30 internationally born players.
“I think it’s growing worldwide,” Cuban-born Yankees pitcher Nestor Cortés said. “No matter where you’re from, I think you have a chance.”
Latin American and Asian players have a storied history in MLB, but these days over 28% players are born outside of the United States.
The 2022 Home Run Derby saw Dominican-born 23-year-old Juan Soto battle countryman Julio Rodríguez to claim the title. They competed with Dominican baseball legend Albert Pujols in the event.
With an increasingly diverse player pool comes a growing fan base around the world. And the stars made their fans a priority all weekend long, stopping for autographs and pictures whenever possible. At the Red Carpet Show leading up to the game, fans lined the fences for a chance to meet their favorite players. Aaron Judge, Rodríguez, and several others spent most of their time walking the fan fence, taking time to sign balls for kids and smile for photos.
Yankees star pitcher Gerrit Cole, seeing the young fans, reflected on what he would have thought about his second All-Star appearance as a kid: “I don’t know if he’d believe it. It’s kind of a dream come true: my favorite team and an All-Star game back home.”
As the festivities come to a close in Los Angeles, baseball now gets right back to business for the second half of the season.