Stanton and Buxton HRs lead AL over NL for 9th straight win for ASG


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LOS ANGELES — Giancarlo Stanton homered on his return to Dodger Stadium, Byron Buxton followed with another drive, and the American League won its ninth straight All-Star Game, beating the National League 3-2 on Tuesday night.

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Fans looking to tie the score after nine innings so they could see a home run derby for the first time decide it instead of extra innings did not 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.

Nine-time All-Star Clayton Kershaw got the first start of his career for the NL at his home ballpark, with the Dodgers hosting for the first time since 1980. Los Angeles Angels two-way star Shohei Ohtani, hit the first hit of the game on Kershaw’s first pitch.

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Houston’s Framber Valdez picked up the win, pitching a scoreless third inning.

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

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McClanahan combined with 10 other pitchers on the five-hitter. Emmanuel Clase hit the side in the ninth to earn the save. Austin Riley’s single in the eighth was the NL’s only hit after the first inning.

Facing 11-game winner Tony Gonsolin of the Dodgers, Stanton’s impressive 457-foot, two-point shot landed in the left-field pavilion, not far from where the LA native watched games in his youth. .

He ended his 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. Jose Ramirez also scored, tying the game 2-all.

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

Ohtani took the lead in the AL as the designated hitter. Questioned a few moments before the start, the Japanese superstar admitted that he was going to swing. He threw a 91 mph fastball into center field on the first pitch.

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“I was definitely swinging one hundred percent,” Ohtani said through a translator. « Kershaw has a very good command. »

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

« I mean, you can’t throw the first pitch of an All-Star Game like a breaking pitch, » Kershaw said. “You kind of had to give him a heater there, I think just for everything. It needs to be done.

But the three-time NL Cy Young Award winner had the final say. Kershaw fired a pick pitch at first that caught Ohtani from the bag.

« Honestly, I didn’t quite know what to throw yet. Sometimes I throw out there for a second to be doomed with the throw,” Kershaw said. « I wasn’t trying to take it off. I was trying to slow the game down a bit, but it worked.

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Then Yankees slugger Aaron Judge went down swinging. After Rafael Devers walked, Vladimir Guerrero Jr. relied on picking a defender and Kershaw walked off to the applause of the grateful crowd.

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

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

Between runs, AL second baseman Andres Gimenez made a defensive save on Manny Machado and followed it up with a dazzling behind-the-back throw to shortstop Tim Anderson, who threw to first to complete the double-dealing.

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A sold-out crowd of 52,518 filled Dodger Stadium two years after the majors’ third-oldest baseball stadium was supposed to host before the game was called off due to the COVID-19 pandemic.


Dodgers outfielder Mookie Betts, with all the other All-Stars behind him, led the crowd in sending 100th birthday wishes to Rachel Robinson. On her 1-2-3 count, the crowd and players shouted « Happy Birthday, Rachel! » Jackie Robinson’s widow did not travel from her New York home. She visited Dodger Stadium in April on Jackie Robinson Day to mark the 75th anniversary of her husband breaking baseball’s color barrier with the Brooklyn Dodgers in 1947. Jackie Robinson’s achievement was honored with on-field comments from Oscar-winning actor Denzel Washington and a presentation on video cards.

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Backed by a mariachi band, Dodgers great Fernando Valenzuela threw the ceremonial first pitch. Fittingly, first-time star Alejandro Kirk of Toronto was at receiver. Both Kirk and Valenzuela were born in Mexico. Fernandomania gripped the Dodgers in 1981, when the southpaw won Rookie of the Year and the Cy Young award by helping LA win the World Series.


Reviews were mostly negative for the second straight year on All-Star uniforms. The AL wore dark gray uniforms that blended in with the plate umpire’s black shirt and dark gray pants. The NL wore all-white uniforms. Both had gold letters. Fans have been critical on social media, with ‘excruciating’ a frequent criticism. Last year, MLB stopped wearing traditional jerseys, which drew heavy criticism online.

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Toronto’s expressive right-hander Alek Manoah wore a microphone and earpiece in round two, engaging in an entertaining conversation with Fox analyst and Hall of Famer John Smoltz. « How hard do I throw? » Manoah asked early. He also looked for scouting reports on Joc Pederson and Acuna Jr. Manoah did well, striking out three and also diving Jeff McNeil with a pitch. A lot of players have been micro. Fans heard Yankees teammates Aaron Judge and Stanton talking back and forth while playing on the outfield, and Yankees teammates Nestor Cortes and Jose Trevino talking while working together.


Dodgers first baseman Freddie Freeman hit third to the now familiar chants of “Freddie! Freddi! » Even in exhibition play, an extreme change occurred and he was kicked out of right field. Home Run Derby champion Juan Soto was kicked out by the third baseman playing much closer from second base to finish fifth. Next season the change is going.

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


The regular season resumes with six games Thursday, including Aaron Judge, Stanton and the Yankees playing a doubleheader in Houston. The Yankees have the best record in the majors at 64-28. Jose Altuve, Yordan Alvarez and the Astros have the second-best mark in the AL at 59-32. Plus, it’ll be Freeman, Betts, Trea Turner and the Dodgers, leading the NL at 60-30, hosting the Giants.


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