The last three times the All Star Game was played in Yankee Stadium, the Bronx Bombers reached the World Series. After hearing that statistic, Yankee fans surely cannot wait to get the second half underway. Meanwhile with home field advantage at stake, the players representing the National League and American League have a lot more to play for than bragging rights. In the final season at Yankee Stadium, baseball fans across the world can at least expect a competitive game. If we are lucky, something special will happen. If not, we will have a tie.
I am going to simulate the 2008 All Star Game in MLB ’08: The Show for the PS3. The American League has not lost in eleven years. Maybe the National League plays different in video games?
Disclaimer: I made All Star-like substitutions in order to mirror the real game as much as possible. Also since you cannot edit the AL and NL teams in the game, I made all the proper trades to the Yankees and Cubs and played the game in Yankee Stadium.
Here are the lineups:
1. Hanley Ramirez, Florida, SS
2. Chase Utley, Philadelphia, 2B
3. Lance Berkman, Houston, 1B
4. Albert Pujols, St. Louis, DH
5. Chipper Jones, Atlanta, 3B
6. Matt Holliday, Colorado, RF
7. Ryan Braun, Milwaukee, LF
8. Kosuke Fukudome, Chicago, CF
9. Geovany Soto, Chicago, C
P: Ben Sheets, Milwaukee, SP
1. Ichiro Suzuki, Seattle, RF
2. Derek Jeter, New York, SS
3. Josh Hamilton, Texas, CF
4. Alex Rodriguez, New York, 3B
5. Manny Ramirez, Boston, LF
6. Milton Bradley, Texas, DH
7. Kevin Youkilis, Boston, 1B
8. Joe Mauer, Minnesota, C
9. Dustin Pedroia, Boston, 2B
P: Cliff Lee, Cleveland, LHP
Hanley Ramirez led off the game with a single in between the two Yankees into left field. Cliff Lee walked Chase Utley on four pitches. On the very next pitch, Lance Berkman lifted a fastball into right field to give the National League a three run cushion. Albert Pujols, Chipper Jones, and Matt Holliday all recorded consecutive outs to give the American League their chance to bat.
Josh Hamilton answered the call when he homered to left field, scoring Ichiro to bring the AL to within one. Lee calmed down and the NL went down in order in the top of the second. Tim Lincecum relieved Ben Sheets in the third inning but gave up a two- out game tying double to Ichiro that scored Dustin Pedroia. Lincecum was pulled and Dan Haren came on to pitch a scoreless inning and a third.
Maybe the National League plays different in video games?
Tampa Bay Ray Scott Kazmir entered the game in the 3rd inning for the AL and gave up a two run Albert Pujols homer that gave the NL a 5-3 lead.
Nate McClouth entered the game in the 6th inning for Kosuke Fukudome but left the game with an injury in the top of the 7th inning while at bat. Corey Hart took his place in the lineup but struck out on the next pitch to end the inning.
Both teams were quiet until Milton Bradley hit a double off of Carlos Marmol. It scored Hamilton and Manny Ramirez to tie the game at five. Marmol would get out of the inning but the damage was done.
Orioles closer George Sherill got on the mound to face pinch hitter Dan Uggla. After taking a full count, Uggla knocked a single up the middle. Christian Guzman, pinch hitting for Hanley Ramirez, advanced the runner and reached first base on an infield hit to shortstop. Two batters later, Albert Pujols lined a double down the left field line to score both Uggla and Guzman. Hitting for Chipper Jones, David Wright singled to right field to bring home Pujols.
Joakim Soria relieved Sherrill and got Matt Holliday to pop up for the final out of the 7th. With the score 8-5, Joe Nathan pitched a scoreless eight for the AL while Brad Lidge did the same for the NL.
It was an “Enter Sandman” ninth inning as Mariano Rivera shut down the NL in the top of the frame.
On the other side, Billy Wagner pitched a one, two, three 9th inning to record the save and to lock up home field advantage for the National League.
W: C. Marmol
L. George Sherrill
S: Billy Wagner
MVP: Albert Pujols
Are you watching the All Star Game tonight? What is your favorite on-field moment? Do you like the home field advantage stipulation? Be sure to use the comment box to let me know!