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The Major League Baseball All-Star Game, also popularly known as the "Midsummer Classic" or "Midsummer Night Classic", is an annual baseball game between players from the National League and the American League, currently selected by fan vote for the starting position players and by the manager for pitchers and reserve players. The All-Star Game usually occurs in early to mid-July and marks the symbolic halfway point in the Major League Baseball (MLB) season (though not the mathematical halfway point; in most seasons, the game actually takes place after about 55% of the season has been completed), and since 2003 it has been used to determine home field advantage for the upcoming World Series. The league winning the All-Star Game plays at home in Games 1, 2, 6, and 7 of the World Series. The losing League plays at home in Games 3. 4. and 5. (Off-days after the 2nd and 5th (if necessary) games).

The first All-Star Game was held as part of the 1933 World's Fair in Chicago, Illinois, and was the brainchild of Arch Ward, then sports editor for The Chicago Tribune. Initially intended to be a one-time event, its great success resulted in making the game an annual one.

Choosing the venueEdit

2007 All-Star Game

The 2007 All-Star Game will be held in San Francisco.

The venue is chosen by Major League Baseball and traditionally alternates between the two leagues every year (this tradition was first broken in 1951, when the Detroit Tigers were chosen to host the annual game as part of the city's 250th birthday at Briggs Stadium, and will be broken again in 2007, when the San Francisco Giants will be the host for the 2007 All-Star Game. Another NL team, the Pittsburgh Pirates, hosted the 2006 event. The "home team" is the league in which the host franchise plays its games. The criteria for choosing the venue are subjective; for the most part, cities with new parks and cities who have not hosted the game in a long time (or never before for teams that came into being in the 1990s) tend to get the nod. In 2005, Comerica Park, the new home of the Tigers, hosted the Midsummer Classic for the first time, the city of Detroit having last hosted the game in 1971. The last All-Star Game to be played in a stadium that was not hosting its first All-Star Game was the 1999 game in Boston's Fenway Park. To date, only three franchises have never hosted a game: the Florida Marlins, the Arizona Diamondbacks, and the Tampa Bay Devil Rays (the Washington Nationals hosted the game when they were the Montreal Expos). The city of Washington hosted the All-Star Game in 1969 when the Texas Rangers franchise was in Washington.

The designated hitter rule is applied based on the league in which the host team plays. In an American League ballpark, both teams use a designated hitter to hit for the pitcher. In a National League ballpark, lineups schedule the pitcher to hit, though pinch hitters are almost always used. The last instance in which a pitcher took his scheduled at-bat was in 2004, as the American League lineup batted around (viz., sent all nine members of the starting lineup to bat at least once in one inning) the National League starting pitcher, Roger Clemens, in the first inning, enabling AL starter Mark Mulder to bat (Clemens struck him out). He was not eligible to be replaced by a pinch hitter, as the starting pitcher in any game must pitch to the first spot in the batting order. [1]

Bold text==The rosters== The manager for each league's team has for many years been the manager of the previous year's league champion. Note that this honor is applied to the person, not the team, so it's possible that the All-Star manager could no longer be with the team he won with, as happened in 2003, when Dusty Baker managed the National League team despite having moved from the champion San Francisco Giants to the Chicago Cubs in the offseason (however, Baker had at least moved to a different team in the same league. If he had switched to an American Lea

ue team, or left baseball entirely, his eligibility to manage the All-Star Game would have been in question. There is some precedent for the later scenario: on two separate occasions, Bob Lemon managed the American League team after having been fired by New York Yankees owner George Steinbrenner). The coaching staff is selected by the manager.

Each team consists of 32 players, selected in one of the following ways, listed in order:

  • Fan voting: Baseball fans vote on the starting position players for the All-Star Game, with ballots distributed at baseball games before mid-season and, more recently, on the Internet. When the game is played at an American League park, the designated hitter for the AL team is also selected in this manner.
  • Player voting: As of 2005, pitchers and one back-up player for each position are elected by the other players. If the top vote-getter at a certain position is also being voted in via fan voting, then the second-place finisher in this category is chosen for the team.
  • Manager selection (first): The manager and the Commissioner's Office will fill the roster up to 31 players.
  • Final vote: After the lists of 31 players for each league is announced, fans will vote for one additional player, chosen from a list of 5 players provided by the manager and the Commissioner's Office.
  • Manager selection (second): After the final vote, the manager and the Commissioner's Office will replace players who are injured or declined to participate. Each major league team is guaranteed to have at least one player selected to participate, though single players from poor teams are occasionally not used (Mark Redman of the Kansas City Royals was the last to be selected and was not be put into the game by the manager).

Between 1935 and 1946, the manager of each All-Star squad selected the entire team. Fans received the right to vote on the eight starters (excluding the pitcher) starting in 1947. In 1957, fans of the Cincinnati Reds stuffed the ballot box as a result of a promotion by a local newspaper which printed pre-marked ballots, and elected a Red to every position except first base. Commissioner Ford Frick stepped in and removed two Reds from the lineup. As a response to this fiasco, the right to elect the non-pitching starters was taken away from the fans until 1970. From 1958 through 1969, players, coaches, and managers made the choices.

One of the most controversial aspects of the player selection process is a rule that each team has to have at least one representative on its league's All-Star roster. While this rule made sense in baseball's pre-expansion days, when there were only eight teams in each league, many now consider it to be outdated since there are now almost twice as many Major League teams in existence. Opponents of the rule contend that the purpose of the game is to spotlight MLB's best players, and many superior players get left off the roster in favor of less deserving players from weaker teams. Supporters of the rule maintain that if the rule were dropped, a small number of powerful teams could end up dominating most of the available roster space. Also, supporters of the rule say that it gives fans from every team (even the poor teams) a reason to watch the game-the reason being that if the game were dominated only by players from a few top teams many fans wouldn't watch because they wouldn't have a favorite or familiar player to follow.

A number of compromises have been suggested, such as limiting the number of representatives a particular team could have, or requiring that a certain percentage of teams be represented. However, Major League Baseball has not indicated that it is considering altering or eliminating the rule in any form. by mr.begay

TiesEdit

At Fenway Park in Boston on July 31, 1961, the first All-Star Game tie in history occurred when the game was stopped in the 9th inning due to rain.

Following a highly controversial situation in the 2002 game when both teams ran out of pitchers in the 11th inning, and in response Commissioner Bud Selig declared the game over, Major League Baseball changed the rules to give the All-Star game "meaning" and additional incentive for victory. From the 2003 season up to the present, the league that won the All-Star Game was to be given home-field advantage for the World Series (something Selig is considering ending, as the AL is unbeaten in every All-Star Game since 1997). Previously, home field advantage in the World Series alternated between the two leagues each year.

Even under the new rules, there is no guarantee that a repeat of the 2002 situation might not occur. The game could still be called a "suspended game" in which case it would become a tie if no make-up date was scheduled. It would be extremely difficult to find such a make-up date: Major League Baseball would have to postpone one or more days of the regular season and/or schedule the make-up date on the travel day between the regular season and the Division Series. Also, one team or the other could alternatively forfeit the game by refusing to continue (see: Major League Baseball's "Official Rules: 4.00 Starting and Ending a Game"). [2]

OdditiesEdit

  • In 1945, with severe wartime travel restrictions in effect, the All-Star Game scheduled to be played at Boston's Fenway Park was canceled.
  • There were two All-Star Games played each season from 1959 to 1962. The second game was added to raise money for the players' pension funds, as well as other causes.
  • The 1981 game in Cleveland was moved from its original July date to Sunday night, August 9. It was the first non-exhibition game played after the end of the players' strike, with second half play beginning the next afternoon with a game in Wrigley Field in Chicago. The 1981 game is the only game to be played on a weekend.

Stuffing the ballot boxEdit

1947 was the first year that baseball allowed fans to vote for the starters on the All-Star team.

In 1957, fans of the Cincinnati Reds stuffed the ballot box and elected 7 Reds players to start in the All-Star Game. They were:

Johnny Temple, 2B
Roy McMillan, SS
Don Hoak, 3B
Ed Bailey, C
Frank Robinson, LF
Gus Bell, CF
Wally Post, RF

The only non-Red elected to start for the National League was St. Louis Cardinals' first baseman Stan Musial. While the Reds were known to be a great offensive team with many outstanding position players, most baseball observers agreed that they did not deserve seven starters in the All-Star Game. An investigation showed that over half of the ballots cast came from Cincinnati. The Cincinnati Enquirer had printed up pre-marked ballots and distributed them with the Sunday newspaper to make it easy to vote early and often. There were even stories of bars in Cincinnati not serving alcohol to customers until they filled out a ballot.

Commissioner Ford Frick decided to appoint Willie Mays of the New York Giants and Hank Aaron of the Milwaukee Braves to substitute for Reds players Gus Bell and Wally Post. In addition, Frick decided to strip the fans of their voting rights. Managers, players, and coaches picked the entire team again until 1969, when the vote again returned to the fans.

To guard against further ballot stuffing, since 1969, each team has been given the same number of ballots to hand out. In 1998, that number was roughly 400,000 ballots. Since the dawn of the internet age, online voting has again raised fears of ballot stuffing. Yet Major League Baseball assures its fans that they have taken precautions to guard against this.

Other All-Star Weekend eventsEdit

Since 1985, the Home Run Derby, a contest between home run hitters, has been played on the day before the All-Star Game. Also, a celebrity softball game is held the day before the Home Run Derby. The teams are usually a mixture of former stars from the host team's past, plus some celebrities from music, film, and television. Since 1999, the All-Star Futures Game has been held during All Star weekend. The two teams, one consisting of young players from the United States and the other consisting of young players from all other nations, are usually chosen based on prospect status in the minor leagues.

Major League Baseball All-Star Games (1933-present)Edit

| colspan="1" align="center" |2007| colspan="1" align="center" |American League| colspan="1" align="center" | 5-4 | colspan="1" align="center" |AT&T Park (San Francisco Giants) | colspan="1" align="center" |Ichiro Suzuki (AL) | colspan="1" align="center" | 2008| colspan="1" align="center" |American League| colspan="1" align="center" | 4-3 | colspan="1" align="center" |Yankee Stadium (New York Yankees) | colspan="1" align="center" |J.D. Drew (AL) | colspan="1" align="center" | 2009| colspan="1" align="center" |TBA| colspan="1" align="center" |TBA| colspan="1" align="center" |Busch Stadium (St. Louis Cardinals) | colspan="1" align="center" |TBA

Major League Baseball All-Star Game's
Year Winner Score Venue (Host team) 'MVP

</tr>

</td> </tr>

</td> </tr>

|- |- |-
YearWinnerScore Venue/Host teamMVP
1933 American4-2 Comiskey Park, Chicago White Sox 
1934 American9-7 Polo Grounds, New York Giants 
1935 American4-1 Municipal Stadium, Cleveland Indians 
1936 National4-3 Braves Field, Boston Braves 
1937 American8-3 Griffith Stadium, Washington Senators 
1938 National4-1 Crosley Field, Cincinnati Reds 
1939 American3-1 Yankee Stadium, New York Yankees 
1940 National4-0 Sportsman's Park, St. Louis Cardinals 
1941 American7-5 Briggs Stadium, Detroit Tigers 
1942 American3-1 Polo Grounds, New York Giants 
1943 American5-3 Shibe Park, Philadelphia Athletics 
1944 National7-1 Forbes Field, Pittsburgh Pirates 
1945 Not held.
1946 American12-0 Fenway Park, Boston Red Sox 
1947 American2-1 Wrigley Field, Chicago Cubs 
1948 American5-2 Sportsman's Park, St. Louis Browns 
1949 American11-7Ebbets Field, Brooklyn Dodgers  
1950 National4-3
(14 innings)
Comiskey Park, Chicago White Sox 
1951 National8-3 Briggs Stadium, Detroit Tigers 
1952 National3-2
(5 innings, rain)
Shibe Park, Philadelphia Phillies 
1953 National5-1 Crosley Field, Cincinnati Reds 
1954 American11-9 Municipal Stadium, Cleveland Indians 
1955 National6-5
(12 innings)
County Stadium, Milwaukee Braves 
1956 National7-3 Griffith Stadium, Washington Senators 
 
1957 American6-5 Sportsman's Park, St. Louis Cardinals 
1958 American4-3 Memorial Stadium, Baltimore Orioles 
1959-aNational5-4 Forbes Field, Pittsburgh Pirates 
1959-bAmerican5-3 Memorial Coliseum, Los Angeles Dodgers 
 
1960-aNational5-3 Municipal Stadium, Kansas City Athletics 
1960-bNational6-0 Yankee Stadium, New York Yankees 
1961-aNational5-4
(10 innings)
Candlestick Park, San Francisco Giants 
1961-bTIE
rain
1-1
(9 innings, rain)
Fenway Park, Boston Red Sox 
1962-aNational3-1 D.C. Stadium, Washington SenatorsMaury Wills, Los Angeles (NL)
1962-bAmerican9-4 Wrigley Field, Chicago CubsLeon Wagner, Los Angeles (AL)
1963 National5-3 Municipal Stadium, Cleveland IndiansWillie Mays, San Francisco (NL)
1964 National7-4 Shea Stadium, New York MetsJohnny Callison, Philadelphia (NL)
1965 National6-5 Metropolitan Stadium, Minnesota TwinsJuan Marichal, San Francisco (NL)
1966 National2-1
(10 innings)
Busch Memorial Stadium, St. Louis CardinalsBrooks Robinson, Baltimore (AL)
1967 National2-1
(15 innings)
Anaheim Stadium, California AngelsTony Perez, Cincinnati (NL)
1968 National1-0 Astrodome, Houston AstrosWillie Mays, San Francisco (NL)
1969 National9-3 RFK Stadium, Washington SenatorsWillie McCovey, San Francisco (NL)
1970 National5-4
(12 innings)
Riverfront Stadium, Cincinnati RedsCarl Yastrzemski, Boston (AL)
1971 American6-4 Tiger Stadium, Detroit TigersFrank Robinson, Baltimore (AL)
1972 National4-3
(10 innings)
Atlanta-Fulton County Stadium, Atlanta BravesJoe Morgan, Cincinnati (NL)
1973 National7-1 Royals Stadium, Kansas City RoyalsBobby Bonds, San Francisco (NL)
1974 National7-2 Three Rivers Stadium, Pittsburgh PiratesSteve Garvey, Los Angeles (NL)
1975 National6-3 County Stadium, Milwaukee BrewersJon Matlack, New York (NL)
Bill Madlock, Chicago (NL)
1976 National7-1 Veterans Stadium, Philadelphia PhilliesGeorge Foster, Cincinnati (NL)
1977 National7-5 Yankee Stadium, New York YankeesDon Sutton, Los Angeles (NL)
1978 National7-3 San Diego Stadium, San Diego PadresSteve Garvey, Los Angeles (NL)
1979 National7-6 Kingdome, Seattle MarinersDave Parker, Pittsburgh (NL)
1980 National4-2 Dodger Stadium, Los Angeles DodgersKen Griffey, Sr., Cincinnati (NL)
1981 National5-4 Cleveland Stadium, Cleveland IndiansGary Carter, Montreal (NL)
1982 National4-1 Olympic Stadium, Montreal ExposDave Concepcion, Cincinnati (NL)
1983 American13-3 Comiskey Park, Chicago White SoxFred Lynn, California (AL)
1984 National3-1 Candlestick Park, San Francisco GiantsGary Carter, Montreal (NL)
1985 National6-1 Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome, Minnesota TwinsLaMarr Hoyt, San Diego (NL)
1986 American3-2 Astrodome, Houston AstrosRoger Clemens, Boston (AL)
1987 National2-0
(13 innings)
Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum, Oakland AthleticsTim Raines, Montreal (NL)
1988 American2-1 Riverfront Stadium, Cincinnati RedsTerry Steinbach, Oakland (AL)
1989 American5-3 Anaheim Stadium, California AngelsBo Jackson, Kansas City (AL)
1990 American2-0 Wrigley Field, Chicago CubsJulio Franco, Texas (AL)
1991 American4-2 SkyDome, Toronto Blue JaysCal Ripken, Jr., Baltimore (AL)
1992 American13-6 Jack Murphy Stadium, San Diego PadresKen Griffey Jr., Seattle (AL)
1993 American9-3 Oriole Park at Camden Yards, Baltimore OriolesKirby Puckett, Minnesota (AL)
1994 National8-7
(10 innings)
Three Rivers Stadium, Pittsburgh PiratesFred McGriff, Atlanta (NL)
1995 National3-2 The Ballpark in Arlington, Texas RangersJeff Conine, Florida (NL)
1996 National6-0 Veterans Stadium, Philadelphia PhilliesMike Piazza, Los Angeles (NL)
1997 American3-1 Jacobs Field, Cleveland IndiansSandy Alomar, Cleveland (AL)
1998 American13-8 Coors Field, Colorado RockiesRoberto Alomar, Baltimore (AL)
1999 American4-1 Fenway Park, Boston Red SoxPedro Martínez, Boston (AL)
2000 American6-3 Turner Field, Atlanta BravesDerek Jeter, New York (AL)
2001 American4-1 Safeco Field, Seattle MarinersCal Ripken, Jr., Baltimore (AL)
2002 TIE
insufficient players
7-7
(11 innings)
Miller Park, Milwaukee Brewersnone
2003 American7-6 U.S. Cellular Field, Chicago White SoxGarret Anderson, Anaheim (AL)
2004 American9-4 Minute Maid Park, Houston AstrosAlfonso Soriano, Texas (AL)
2005 American7-5 Comerica Park, Detroit TigersMiguel Tejada, Baltimore (AL)
2006 American3-2 PNC Park, Pittsburgh PiratesMichael Young, Texas (AL)
2007 American5-4 AT&T Park, San Francisco GiantsIchiro Suzuki

77 All-Star Games have been played, with the National League winning 40 and the American League winning 35 (there were 2 ties). The National League has the longest winning streak of 11 games from 1972-1982.

2008 All-Star Game and BeyondEdit

Among the cities in the running for 2008's All-Star Game are Anaheim (whose stadium was so completely transformed in the late 1990s and early 2000s that some people almost consider it a whole new entity), New York (2008 will most likely be the historic stadium's last season), as the new Yankee Stadium is predicted to open in 2009, so the 2008 All-Star Game could be a historic send off for the Stadium [3]), Tampa Bay, Minnesota, and Toronto. Commissioner Selig said during the 2005 All-Star Break that the 2008 game will definitely go to an American League city. His statement would put the cities of Phoenix, Washington, Cincinnati, St. Louis, and San Diego in position for a run at the 2009 All-Star Game. It is likely that Minnesota will not be selected for the 2008 All-Star Game so that the 2010 ASG can be held in the Twins' then-brand new ballpark scheduled to open that season, replacing the aging Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome.

Commissioner Bud Selig recently announced that Kauffman Stadium in Kansas City will likely host an All-Star Game sometime between 2010 and 2014. He also said that the earliest an All-Star Game likely could be held at Chase Field, the Arizona Diamondbacks home stadium, would be 2011, when the ballpark will be 13 years old. This is because St. Louis, with its new Busch Stadium and adjacent Ballpark Village, is the favorite to host in 2009. [4]

The New York Mets could also host the All-Star Game around this time or after because of their new park scheduled to open in 2009. This would make years following logical. The Yankees could also host an All-Star Game around then because their new stadium is also scheduled to open in 2009, as previously mentioned. However, if they hosted the 2008 All-Star Game as a send-off to old Yankee Stadium, a return so quickly to New York might not be good, so it could possibly be the 2020s before the Yankees host again if they host in 2008. However, if they didn't host in 2008, they would also be a logical choice in upcoming years.

See alsoEdit

External linksEdit


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