MLB All-Star Game 2011: Live Blog and Analysis
Manny Randhawa here with the B/R 2011 MLB All-Star Game Live Blog.
Stay connected here for updates on the 82nd Annual Midsummer Classic, with game info and analysis of the happenings at Chase Field in Phoenix.
Join me as we find out whether the pitching-heavy NL can make it two straight over the slugging American League, or whether the AL will reclaim home-field advantage in this year's World Series!
The National League has now made it two straight over the AL, clinching home field advantage for this fall's World Series.
The National League's manager, Bruce Bochy, and the man who threw the final pitch of this year's Midsummer Classic, Brian Wilson, know just how important that home field advantage can be, and are surely pleased that the NL came out on top.
Perhaps this is the beginning of a new winning streak. The American League has dominated their NL counterparts since the mid 1990s, but now the National League has begun a streak of its own.
Prince Fielder struck the big blow tonight, and he became the first Brewer to homer in an All-Star Game in doing so. He also became the first Brewer to ever win the All-Star Game MVP award.
The National League's pitching, as expected, was stellar, from top to bottom, and that proved to be a huge key tonight.
The 82nd annual MLB All-Star game is now in the books, and we now turn our attention to a much-anticipated second half of the MLB season.
Brian Wilson gets Paul Konerko to ground out to SS, and the National League wins, 5-1.
No close-up of the cleats yet.
Wilson vs. Konerko.
A bright orange glove for Wilson. First pitch is a fly ball to right for out number two.
Liner to right for a base hit, the ball was thrown to the plate but got by the catcher. Runners at second and third, one out.
Here comes Wilson.
Grounder to short, thrown away by Starlin Castro, E-6. The ball was in the dirt and Joey Votto couldn't dig it out at first.
Nasty breaking pitch from Hanrahan strikes out the Rangers' Michael Young on a check-swing. One away.
Joel Hanrahan of the Pirates in for the 9th. Brian Wilson warming up in the 'pen.
Gio Gonzalez impressive in relief; a great All-Star appearance and possibly just the first of many to come for this guy.
I don't think the grounds crew at Chase Field appreciates the divit Heath Bell looks like he left to the left of the mound when he slid in heel-first.
Bell gets his one man and we head to the bottom of the eighth.
The Fox camera guy had to sprint behind Heath Bell to keep up with him and get the shot for television.
Bruce Bochy, known for his masterful use of the bullpen, summons for Heath Bell of the Padres, and Bell sprints to the edge of the mound and actually slides into the game.
One of the big stories after this game, if this score holds up, is how the absence of American League stars contributed to a second-straight AL loss of home field advantage in the postseason.
Johnny Venters in the game for the NL.
Muhammad Ali in the house.
Pablo Sandoval, a first-time all-star, hits a ground-rule double down the left field line to drive in Hunter Pence with the National League's 5th run.
5-1 NL, bottom of the seventh.
You've gotta be thinking Sandoval's teammate with the Giants, Brian Wilson, is starting to stir in the NL bullpen.
As Buck and McCarver discuss how difficult it looks to hit the way Kevin Youklis does, Youk singles to left-center.
That'll be all for Atlanta's Jair Jurrjens, Craig Kimbrel coming in.
Andrew McCutchen, who was the center of a lot of controversy because he wasn't initially chosen by NL Manager Bruce Bochy for the All-Star team, is now in the game in center field.
Andre Ethier singles home Rickie Weeks, 4-1 NL after 5.
Bruce Bochy knows how important home field advantage in the Series can be, and he's playing to win: Starlin Castro pinch-runs for Tulo after a base hit, and promptly Castro steals second.
Prince Fielder with a three-run bomb to left-center that hit the yellow line on top of the wall; 3-1 National League. Still no out, bottom 4.
Two on, none out for the NL after consecutive singles by Beltran and Kemp.
Hunter Pence just threw out Jose Bautista, who was trying to score on an Adrian Beltre single to left. What a breakout season Pence is having for Houston. He's representing the Astros well, Houston being one of the worst, if not the worst club in the big leagues right now.
After 3 and a half, 1-0 American League.
Lee gives up two more hits following the Gonzalez homer; lifted by Bochy. Tyler Clippard coming in.
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