How did the AL East All Stars perform in the Mid-Summer Classic?
Another Midsummer Classic has come and gone, and the American League has earned World Series homefield advantage for the second year in a row with a 5-3 win over the National League. Last week we covered who would be representing the American League East in the game. Now that it’s come and gone, let’s take a look at how those players fared against the best of the best.
OF Adam Jones: 0-2, K; Grade: D-
Not a great showing for Jones, who struck out against Zack Greinke and popped out to third against Clayton Kershaw.
OF/DH Nelson Cruz: 0-2, K; Grade: D-
Cruz mirrored his teammate, grounding out in the first against a struggling Adam Wainwright and striking out in the fourth against Greinke, one batter before Jones did. All in all, a pathetic night for the Orioles’ All-Stars.
Toronto Blue Jays
OF Jose Bautista: 0-2, K; Grade: D-
Bautista struck out swinging in the first against NL starter Wainwright immediately following a Miguel Cabrera home run. In his only other AB, Bautista grounded out to first against, you guessed it, Zack Greinke. He also tried – but failed – to make a catch up against the right field side-wall, instead having the ball completely miss his glove as he barreled into the padding.
P Mark Buehrle: DNP; Grade: –
Buehrle never entered last night’s game.
New York Yankees
SS Derek Jeter: 2-2, Single, Double, Run Scored; Grade: A
Couldn’t have really gone better for Jeter. He got his cheers during pre-game intros, then received a several-minute standing ovation before leading off the bottom of the first for the American League. In his first AB, Jeter ripped a double down the right-field line, eventually scoring on a double by Mike Trout, who was awarded the game’s MVP. In his other at-bat, Jeter singled off of Cincinnati’s Alfredo Simon, and reached second on a wild pitch, but was stranded there. All in all a very good night for Jeter in his final All-Star Game.
P Dellin Betances: DNP; Grade: –
After all that, middle reliever Betances never entered the game. Good job, John Farrell.
Boston Red Sox
P Jon Lester: 1.0 IP, 3 H, 2 ER, 0 K, 0 BB; Grade: F
Not the best out of Boston ace Jon Lester. He worked the second inning, and it wasn’t pretty. He started the inning by getting future-teammate Giancarlo Stanton to pop out to second, then the wheels fell off. Lester gave up a single to Milwaukee’s Aramis Ramirez, then back-to-back RBI doubles to Chase Utley and Jonathan Lucroy before bouncing back to get Carlos Gomez and Andrew McCutchen to limit the damage. By inning’s end, Lester had thrown 22 pitches and allowed what ended up being two of the three National League runs. Not a great outing by any measure.
P Koji Uehara: 0.1 IP, 0 H, 0 ER, 1 K, 0 BB; Grade: B
Koji did all they asked of him, striking out Cincinnati’s Devin Mesoraco – who is apparently a real player AND an All-Star, so good for him – to end the sixth. I’m surprised Farrell didn’t try to keep Uehara for an eventual save, but with an All-Star Game you can never be sure what will happen. Ultimately, Uehara threw a total of four pitches before hitting the showers.
Tampa Bay Rays
P David Price: DNP; Grade: –
Price, who pitched for Tampa on Sunday, was ineligible to play in last night’s game.
So there you have it, the entire American League East’s All-Star Game performance. In all: 2-8, a single, a double, a run (all courtesy of Derek Jeter) and three strikeouts. On the mound, only the Red Sox made an appearance, tossing 1.1 innings, allowing two runs on three hits and striking out one. Overall, I give the American League East a D+, as only two players did anything while the rest of the division struggled both at the plate and on the mound. Of course after bashing the Jeter selection, merit-wise, he has the best game of the bunch. I suppose that teaches me right. At least the Red Sox will get to have Game One of the World Series at home again, so that’s nice.