In terms of old-timey All-Star Games, one ever talks about the 1950 All-Star Game at Comiskey Park — just the inaugural 1933 contest.
The Chicago White Sox had just one player on the team (pitcher Rae Scarborough) and he didn’t even play. It would be the last season the White Sox would place just one player on the All-Star team until 1966 (just Tommie Agee).
Anyway, the 1950 game was a phenomenal one. It was the first ASG to go into extra innings, and it wasn’t decided until a Red Schoendienst solo shot leading off the top of the 14th. Ralph Kiner had clubbed a solo shot leading off the top of the ninth to tie the game at three.
Schoendienst’s homer was his only at-bat of the game, having come in as a defensive replacement in the bottom of the 11th. The game ended with Joe DiMaggio tapping into a double play to end the 14th.
American Leaguers Larry Doby (CF), Phil Rizzuto (SS) and George Kell (3B), played all 14 innings, as did NL All-Stars Willie Jones (3B), Kiner (LF), Stan Musial (1B) and Roy Campanella (at catcher!).
An MVP wasn’t awarded back in those days, but I’d retroactively give it to Larry Jansen, a two-time New York Giants All-Star, who had a .527 WPA for his five scoreless innings of relief in the game, tallying six Ks and giving up just one hit.
The Midsummer Classic was still in the throes of the AL’s initial dominance of the game, winning 12 of the first 16 before the 1950. The NL punched back hard, going 23-2-1 from 1960-82. The AL has been the streakier of late, going 18-3-1 from 1988-2009.
Overall, the annual series is tied, 43-43-2. The All-Star Game should return to Sox Park in 2033, for the 100th anniversary.
Tonight’s game may be in jeopardy, as the rain that has been pouring in WDC all day is not due to stop until 7 p.m. CST, a half-hour into game time. It’s not unprecedented that an All-Star Game be postponed due to rain — in fact, it happened in Washington, D.C. in 1969:
FYI in case you're wondering the last time an All-Star Game was delayed/postponed for rain was 1969. In Washington. And the field looked a little something like this.— Ashley MacLennan (@90feetfromhome) July 17, 2018
(photo: AP Photo) pic.twitter.com/JcrWmVsoli
The contingency plan is to push the game to tomorrow night, if conditions tonight make play impossible.
But for now, let’s have the lineups!
Wow. Mookie Betts, Jose Altuve, Mike Trout, Manny Machado and Chris Sale are well on course for the Hall of Fame. Not inconceivable that José Ramírez, Aaron Judge and José Abreu get there, too.
On the other hand: Matt Kemp and Nick Markakis! Not in danger of the Hall of Fame.
But I’d put Nolan Arenado, Paul Goldschmidt, Freddie Freeman, Bryce Harper and Max Scherzer in the Hall mix for sure.