Last night’s All-Star Game saw the air filled with as many home runs as there was rain earlier in the evening: a record 10 home runs were donged from various sources on both the National and American League sides with the AL once again coming up victorious in an eventual 8-6 10-inning victory.
You don’t care about that.
You want to know if Brad Hand, our sole representative, did his job.
He did indeed.
Coming in the top of the 8th with one out, Brad struck out Yan Gomes on one of his patented 82 mph sliders and subsequently induced a grounder out of Michael Brantley to end the inning. Hand would come out to start the 9th for the NL and got Jed Lowrie to pop-up for the 1st out.
With Brad Hand having secured the requisite 3 outs, World Series-losing NL manager Dave Roberts called for his own Ross Stripling to relieve Hand for the remainder of the 9th inning. Stripling would go on to surrender back-to-back jacks in the 10th inning to Astros teammates Alex Bregman and George Springer. The Dodger righty ultimately took the loss for the National League after J.A. Happ lead the AL through the bottom of the 10th only surrendering a shot to actual Canadian Joey Votto. Boos were heard. Watching a Dodger manager leave his pitcher in to fail echoed last year’s World Series and probably promoted feelings of schadenfreude among multiple fanbases.
Here’s Hand in action:
Easy as 1️⃣-2️⃣-3️⃣ for @bhand22 tonight! #TalkToTheHand | #AllStarGame pic.twitter.com/6xhPr9Ql2V— San Diego Padres (@Padres) July 18, 2018
As for all the home runs, they came off the bats of the usual suspects and others: A-a-ron Judge, Mike Trout, Willson Contreras, Trevor Story, Jean Segura, Christian Yelich, Scooter Gennett, Alex Bregman, George Springer, and Joey Votto all got their long ball on.
During the ASG it was all but announced that the Dodgers will give up more of their farm in order to rent out Manny Machado for the rest of the season. Brewers pitching phenom Josh Hader may have taken the biggest L of the entire game as some rather unsavory tweets were unearthed during his outing. He also gave up a 3 run bomb to Jean Segura of the Vedder Cup rival Seattle Mariners. Alex Bregman seized MVP honors.
Given that the All Star Game does not determine home field advantage in the World Series anymore, the players will go into the off days richer for the experience and with an ASG appearance to pad their resume. Someone should ask Scott Boras what the worth of ASG appearances to Prestige Value® is.
The All-Star Game will make its way to Cleveland next year and be hosted in a Chief Wahoo-less Progressive Field.