2022 All-Star Game: Giancarlo Stanton, Byron Buxton lead American League over National League in 9th straight win

LOS ANGELES — Giancarlo Stanton landed in a particularly beautiful spot on his homecoming at Dodger Stadium for the All-Star Game, putting his name next to some of the thugs he loved watching from the left field seats as a kid.

Byron Buxton followed up with another drive and the American League won its ninth straight Midsummer Classic, beating the National League 3-2 on Tuesday night.

AL manager Dusty Baker reminded his team of the winning streak before the game.

“We had to capture it for him and keep it going,” Stanton said.

Fans who wanted a tie after nine innings so they could see a first home run derby decide the winner, rather than extra innings, didn’t get their wish.

Instead, back-to-back homers in the fourth inning were the difference as the AL increased their overall advantage to 47-43-2.

Against the Dodgers’ 11-game winner Tony Gonsolin, Stanton’s impressive 457-foot double shot landed in the left pavilion.

“He smokes them,” said NL manager Brian Snitker. “Big strong kid.”

Stanton and his father Mike sat out there after buying tickets from scalpers for whatever price they could afford.

“My Pops took me to my first Dodger game, taught me how to love that game, and now here we are,” the New York Yankees hitter said. “Look at us, it’s just amazing.”

Despite his love for the home team, Stanton was thrilled to see the visiting batsmen.

“It was really the big boppers when they came to town,” he said. “I wanted to see (Mark) McGwire, (Sammy) Sosa and (Barry) Bonds, even if it was two shots. It all comes full circle.”

Stanton was voted MVP of the game and received a glass bat engraved with his name from two-time MVP Steve Garvey and Billie Jean King, who are part of the Dodgers’ possession.

“It hasn’t fully penetrated yet,” he said. “It will be an amazing memory for all of our lives.”

The homer ended Stanton’s career 0 for 7 skids in the game and, at 111.2 mph, was the hardest-hit homer in an All-Star game tracked by Statcast. José Ramírez also scored a goal and tied the game 2-2.

Four pitches later, Buxton went deep to give the AL a 3-2 lead against a visibly frustrated Gonsolin who suffered the loss.

Nine-time All-Star Clayton Kershaw made the first start of his career for the NL at his home turf when the Dodgers hosted for the first time since 1980. Los Angeles Angels two-way star Shohei Ohtani scored the first goal of the game at Kershaw’s first pitch.

Houston’s Framber Valdez clinched the win, throwing a scoreless third inning.

AL starter Shane McClanahan of Tampa Bay gave up two runs and four hits. The first-time All-Star, who owns an MLB-leading 1.71 ERA, had conceded four hits or fewer in his last seven starts.

McClanahan combines with 10 other pitchers on the five-hitter. Cleveland closer Emmanuel Clase put on quite a show, hitting the side in the ninth game to earn the save.

Austin Riley’s single in the eighth was the NL’s only hit after the first inning.

Ohtani started as the designated hitter for the AL. Interviewed just before launch, the Japanese superstar said in English he was going to swing. He cracked a 91-mile fastball into midfield in first place.

“I definitely swung 100 percent,” Ohtani later said through a translator. “Kershaw has really good commands.”

His hit produced a 0-for-8 series as a batsman against Kershaw. Last year, Ohtani was the starting pitcher and led as DH in the AL’s 5-2 win in Denver. He hasn’t pitched this year so he can start in the Angels’ first game after the break in Atlanta on Friday.

“I mean, you can’t throw the first pitch of an All-Star game as a breaking ball,” Kershaw said. “You had to give him a heater there somehow, I think just for everything. Had to do it.”

But the three-time NL Cy Young Award winner had the final say. Kershaw first fired a pickoff throw that pocketed Ohtani.

“To be honest, I wasn’t quite sure what to throw. Sometimes I’ll throw over there for a second to get the pitch passed,” Kershaw said. “I didn’t try to turn him off. I tried to delay the game a bit but it worked.”

Then the Yankees’ Aaron Judge, who leads the majors in home runs, went down with a bang. After Rafael Devers left, Vladimir Guerrero Jr. justified the choice of a fielder, and Kershaw walked away to applause from the appreciative crowd.

“I tried to take a minute in the beginning to take it all in and look around, which I usually never do,” Kershaw said. “That sort of calmed everything down for me and then I had a lot of fun.”

The NL wasted no time in taking their first 2-0 lead in 10 years. Ronald Acuña Jr., dressed in yellow spikes and alternating yellow and red sleeves, led from the bottom of the first with a double to the left and scored on Mookie Betts’ single. Paul Goldschmidt hit a solo homer with two outs.

Between runs, Guardians second baseman Andrés Giménez made a defensive stop against Manny Machado and followed up with a stunning behind-the-back throw for shortstop Tim Anderson, who shot for first to complete the doubles game.

A sell-out crowd of 52,518 filled Dodger Stadium, two years after the majors’ third-oldest ballpark was scheduled to host before the game was canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.


Dodgers outfielder Mookie Betts, with all the other All-Stars behind him, led the crowd to send happy 100th birthday wishes to Rachel Robinson. At his 1-2-3 count, the audience and players chanted “Happy Birthday, Rachel!” Jackie Robinson’s widow did not travel from her home in Connecticut. She visited Dodger Stadium in April on Jackie Robinson Day to celebrate the 75th anniversary of her husband breaking baseball’s color barrier with the Brooklyn Dodgers in 1947, according to the video boards.


Backed by a mariachi band, Dodgers’ Fernando Valenzuela threw the ceremonial first pitch. Fittingly, first-time Toronto All-Star Alejandro Kirk served as the catcher. Kirk and Valenzuela were both born in Mexico. Fernandomania grabbed the Dodgers in 1981 when the left-hander won Rookie of the Year and the Cy Young Award for helping LA win the World Series.


Reviews of the All-Star Uniforms have been overwhelmingly negative for the second year in a row. The AL wore dark gray uniforms that blended with the panel umpire’s black shirt and dark gray trousers. The NL wore all-white uniforms. Both had gold lettering. Fans have been critical on social media, with “horrible” being a common criticism. Last year, MLB refrained from wearing traditional jerseys, which drew strong criticism online.


Alek Manoah, Toronto’s punchy right-hander, wore a mic and earbud while pitching the second inning and had an entertaining chat with Fox analyst and Hall of Famer John Smoltz. “How hard do I throw?” Manoah asked early. He also sought scouting reports on Joc Pederson and Acuña Jr. Manoah did well, hitting three and also beating Jeff McNeil with one throw. Many players were miked. Fans could hear Judge and Stanton chatting back and forth as they played outfield, and Yankees batterymates Nestor Cortes and Jose Trevino chatted while working together.


Dodgers first baseman Freddie Freeman slammed in the third to the now-familiar chants of “Freddie! Freddie!” Even in exhibition play, there was an extreme shift and he was thrown out of right field. Home run derby champion Juan Soto was kicked out by third baseman, who was playing much closer to second base, to finish fifth. Next season, the shift will likely disappear in the majors.


Hall of Fame announcer Vin Scully, who was the voice of the Dodgers for 67 years before retiring in 2016, watched the game from his Los Angeles home. The Bronx-born 94-year-old began naming games when the franchise was in Brooklyn and followed the team west ahead of the 1958 season.


The regular season resumes Thursday with six games including Stanton, Judge and the Yankees playing a doubleheader in Houston. The Yankees have the best record in the majors at 64-28. Jose Altuve, Jordan Alvarez and Baker’s Astros have the second best grade in the AL at 59-32.

“My only regret is that we have to play him a doubleheader on Thursday,” said Baker. “But for today we’re on the same side.”

Also, it will be Freeman, Betts, Trea Turner and the Dodgers leading the NL 60-30 and hosting the Giants.

Copyright © 2022 by The Associated Press. All rights reserved.

https://6abc.com/mlb-all-star-game-midsummer-classic-dodger-stadium-american-league/12062578/ 2022 All-Star Game: Giancarlo Stanton, Byron Buxton lead American League over National League in 9th straight win

Alley Einstein

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