MLB All-Star 2018: Seven things you missed at Midsummer Classic
The 2018 MLB All-Star Game offered us a perfect microcosm of the season as the American League topped the National League 8-6.
Players were striking out like crazy, the weather gave fans a fright and seemingly all the runs came via the homer in Washington on Tuesday.
However, the most interesting things during the game could not always be seen during the broadcast.
Here are seven things you may have missed at the Midsummer Classic.
1. AN EARLY WELCOME
National League manager Dave Roberts gave Washington Nationals ace Max Scherzer the ball to start the game and the fans loved it. They enjoyed it so much they actually gave Scherzer a standing ovation before the game even started. They cheered him for a solid minute when he was walking out to warm up for his start. With the All-Star game, it is easy to say this guy, or this guy should have started, but the cool thing about it now is that it really does not matter and home town teams can get these moments without someone questioning whether it affected a league's chances to get home-field advantage.
2. JOSE ALTUVE'S FIRST HIT
One of the best hitters in baseball came into the night 0 for eight in All-Star games. He almost looked like he was going to leave his fourth appearance at the classic without a hit as he went 0 for two to start the night. But in his third at-bat he finally poked one into right field to tally his first hit in an All-Star game. And while he loved it, his fellow major leaguers loved it even more. Mike Trout hugged him, Matt Kemp gave him a shake of the shoulders, and Manny Machado gave him props. Altuve, though, was sure to cherish the moment. He even asked for the ball.
Jose asking for the ball after the hit is amazing. pic.twitter.com/z7snVNrymX-- Houston Astros (@astros) July 18, 2018
3. THE CLYDESDALES SHOWED UP
OK, this is a silly one, but the Budweiser Clydesdales showed up on the field before the game. It is not often you see that especially in warm weather that is laced with humidity.
4. THE FIELD WAS FLOODED
Before the game there was a D.C. equivalent of a monsoon. The field was flooded with water and was covered almost 75 per cent with H2O. But props to the Nationals. They got it clean and clear and made the field playable. The before and after shots are crazy. These are a mere four hours apart.
5. THE YANKS GET A HIT
One would think that a storied franchise like the New York Yankees would have gobs of hits in the All-Star game the last four years. One would be wrong. In fact, Aaron Judge's home run off Scherzer was the first Yankee hit since 2014. Who would have thought?
6. ALWAYS COACHING
A.J. Hinch joked at Monday's presser that he did not realise there would be much strategy in the game. He was either clearly kidding or avoiding showing his hand because he employed the shift in the second inning on Brandon Crawford and then left Blake Snell in for a second inning during the middle of the game as two of the next three batters were left-handed. Maybe Hinch wants some more bragging rights over NL manager and friend Roberts?
7. THE SELFIE NOT HEARD ROUND THE WORLD
Everyone saw Baltimore Orioles star Manny Machado take a selfie with Los Angeles Dodgers outfield Matt Kemp in the second inning and then they drew the conclusion that he is all but moving on to Los Angeles in a trade that is likely to be official on Wednesday. Almost no one noticed another selfie Machado took as he stood on second base with Atlanta Braves right fielder Nick Markakis and posed for a picture again. The two were team-mates from 2012-2014 in Baltimore. So while the Machado trade to the Dodgers may be a done deal, Machado may not have been posing with Kemp to confirm it.