Since the first MLB All-Star Game was held in 1933, there have been plenty of memorable moments for fans to recall. The Cincinnati Reds have been no slouch in creating a few of their own unique and memorable All-Star moments.
Cincinnati has played host to the MLB All-Star Game on four occasions—1938 and 1953 at Crosley Field, and 1970 and 1988 at Riverfront Stadium. Owner Bob Castellini has hinted in recent months that Cincy could be in line for hosting another ASG within the next few years.
The most memorable of the four All-Star Games that the city of Cincinnati has hosted, has to fall to the 1970 occurrence. But, more on that later.
Here are Cincinnati's seven most memorable All-Star Game moments, in no particular order.
In 1967, a young Tony Perez would come to the plate in the 15th inning of a 1-1 ballgame. Mr.Clutch proceeded to do what the "Big Dog" would do for much of his career as a vital member of the Big Red Machine—he would come through big.
"Doggy" would send a pitch over the wall for a go-ahead home run and thus send the N.L. squad home with a victory.
His heroics would land him the MVP award—the first time it was ever awarded to a Cincinnati Reds player, and it was these such heroics throughout his career that would eventually land him in the National Baseball Hall of Fame.
In 1982, Dave Concepcion would lead the National League team to a 4-1 victory, hitting a second inning, two-run, go-ahead home run. He would end the game going 1-for-3 at the plate and also turned a double play on the field.
Concepcion's stellar efforts would earn him the game's MVP award. He is the last Reds player to capture the honor.
Johnny Vander Meer had one heck of a rookie campaign. He threw back to back no-hitters, (becoming the only pitcher to ever accomplish such a feat) and was named the N.L. All-Star Game starter.
Johnny was the first Reds pitcher to start an ASG and would represent Cincinnati well, throwing three innings of one-hit, shutout ball in a 4-1 winning effort.
Talk about setting the bar high for rookie pitchers!
The 1957 ASG saw seven Cincinnati Reds selected to the National League starting lineup.
Catcher Ed Bailey, second baseman Johnny Temple, shortstop Roy McMillan, third baseman Don Hoak, left fielder Frank Robinson, center fielder Gus Bell and right fielder Wally Post were all selected to the team by the fans. The only Cincy starter not selected was at first base. Big Ted Kluszewski, was injured most of the year and wasn't even listed on the ballot.
The Cincinnati fans did some major ballot stuffing as it was, Cincinnati accounted for over half of the ballots cast that year.
In the end, MLB Commissioner Ford Frick would step in and replace Gus Bell and Wally Post in the starting lineup. Bell would remain on the team while Post was removed as an All-Star.
Needless to say, Frick would later remove the All-Star voting process from the fans until the game returned to Cincinnati in 1970.
Kudos to Cincy fans for a job well done.
I'd like to credit the L.A. Times article here for some of the facts listed in this slide.
The Cincinnati Reds would send seven All-Stars plus their manager to the 1976 All-Star Game. Pete Rose (2-for-3: run, triple), Joe Morgan (1-for-3: run), George Foster (1-for-3: three-run HR), Johnny Bench (1-for-2), and Dave Concepcion (1-for-2) all started for the National League.
Ken Griffey (1-for-1: run, RBI) and Tony Perez (BB) also made the N.L. squad.
All Cincinnati Players reached base and mightily contributed to the National League's (or the Cincinnati Reds') 7-1 victory over the American League All-Stars.
Chris Sabo, A.K.A. Spuds, took the city of Cincinnati by storm in the summer of '88. On his way to the Rookie of the Year award, he would make his first All-Star appearance—in his hometown.
Though Spuds didn't get the start, he would enter the game late as a pinch-runner to the enlightenment of the home crowd. He would go on to take advantage of his brief appearance by stealing second base—sending the home crowd into a frenzy.
The Cincinnati Reds debuted Riverfront Stadium in 1970 and began play on June 30th halfway into the 1970 season. Just two weeks later, the city and stadium would play host to the Midsummer Classic and claim what is arguably the most memorable All-Star Game moment in history.
With the game tied in the bottom of the 12th inning and Pete Rose on second base, Jim Hickman singled to center, setting the stage for this epic moment.
Pete would round third and head home for the game winning run —and the rest as they say is history.
Pete, the National League and the Cincinnati fans all went home winners on that night—a night that is without any doubt the most memorable moment in Cincinnati Reds' All-Star Game history.