AL wins All-Star Game, Perkins gets save
MINNEAPOLIS — Derek Jeter made his 14th and final All-Star Game a memorable one, going 2-for-2 and helping the American League earn a 5-3 victory over the National League on Tuesday night at Target Field.
The New York Yankees shortstop started a three-run run first inning with a double. He also singled in the third, then took his position in the field to start the fourth inning. AL manager John Farrell of the Boston Red Sox sent out Chicago White Sox shortstop Alexei Ramirez to replace Jeter, who received a long ovation.
Jeter, who announced in February that he is retiring at the end of the season, doffed his cap to his crowd, then hugged each of his teammates once he returned to the dugout. With the fans asking for a curtain call, Jeter went in front of the dugout and tipped his cap again.
Fittingly, Los Angeles Angels outfielder Mike Trout, who seems poised to replace Jeter as the face of Major League Baseball, was the game’s Most Valuable Player. He finished with two extra-base hits and two RBIs.
Trout’s double in the fifth inning off St. Louis Cardinals reliever Pat Neshek broke a 3-3 tie and proved to be the game-winning hit. Houston Astros second baseman Jose Altuve followed with a sacrifice fly off Washington Nationals reliever Tyler Clippard to make it 5-3.
Milwaukee catcher Jonathan Lucroy hit a pair of RBI doubles for the NL, and Brewers third baseman Aramis Ramirez also had two hits.
Detroit Tigers right-hander Max Scherzer got the win, and Minnesota Twins closer Glen Perkins earned the save. Neshek took the loss. Perkins and Neshek are both natives of the Twin Cities area.
Jeter sliced a double down the right field line to lead off the first on the second pitch from Adam Wainwright, and he scored on a triple by Trout. One out later, Tigers first baseman Miguel Cabrera blasted a two-run home run to left field to put the AL ahead 3-0.
Wainwright was tagged for three runs and three hits in his one inning, a day after NL manager Mike Matheny of the St. Louis Cardinals chose his team’s ace as the starting pitcher over Los Angeles Dodgers left-hander Clayton Kershaw. It was a decision that created some minor controversy considering that Kershaw recently had a 41-inning scoreless streak.
Kershaw followed Wainwright by pitching a perfect second inning.
After Seattle Mariners right-hander Felix Hernandez pitched a scoreless first inning for the AL, the NL scored twice in the second off the Red Sox’s Jon Lester. Philadelphia Phillies second baseman Chase Utley and Lucroy hit back-to-back RBI doubles.
Lucroy hit a run-scoring double in the fourth off White Sox left-hander Chris Sale to tie the score at 3-3.
Tuesday’s game was quite a contrast to the previous two All-Star Games, both of which ended in shutouts.
Notes: Oakland Athletics RHP Jeff Samardzija was a man without a country as he suited up with the National League team, even though he is now playing in the American League. He was voted into the game by NL players before being traded by the Chicago Cubs on July 4, but he was deemed ineligible to play by Major League Baseball. ... Hall of Famer Rod Carew, who won seven AL batting titles with the Minnesota Twins, threw out the ceremonial first pitch. ... Next year’s All-Star Game will be played at the Great American Ball Park in Cincinnati.