Just one day after Josh Hamilton puts out the best first-round performance with 28 home runs in the Home Run Derby, Michael Young was once again clutch.
And it wasn't just Young. Milton Bradley, Josh Hamilton, and Ian Kinsler each had a stolen base for the AL. Kinsler would have had a second if the umpire hadn't blown the call.
And while Young did end it in the 15th, he should have ended it sooner. It just isn't too often that Young has a catcher hitting before him and Rays catcher Dioner Navarro was thrown out at the plate.
But that is just the 2008 All-Star game. Don't forget about the 2003 All-Star Game. You know, the first one that "counted" to give home field advantage to the winning league in the World Series.
Then it was Hank Blalock who ripped a two-run home run in the bottom of the eighth to give the AL an eventual 7-6 win. Or even the 2006 All-Star Game when Young once again came through. This time it was a two-RBI triple in the top of the ninth to give the AL a 3-2 win.
And where did the Rangers finish those seasons after helping the AL get a boost in the classic? Certainly not in first, or leading the wild card. Texas was a solid 25 games out of first when the 2003 season came to a close and 13 games out of first in 2006.
And now, once again, it was Rangers who have boosted the AL to home field advantage. But this year could be different. This year the Rangers could actually benefit from their All-Star performances. It will take some work, but the possibility is out there.
So, for any future AL All-Star manager: If a Ranger isn't voted into the starting lineup, and the players don't vote one in don't just throw a pitcher out in the bullpen. Make sure you have a guy up there at the plate to get the job done when you need it.
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