Monday, July 12, 2010
All-Star Game Memories: Flashback to 2001
I'm going to talk about my favorite All-Star game moments. For me my favorite All-Star game will always be the 2001 All-Star game. I remember when the Mariners were awarded the All-Star game in 1998 I couldn't wait until the day came when we finally had the All-Star game. Then the disaster of the 2000 offseason happened and just like that the nightmare scenario was going to take place. A-Rod, Ken Griffey Jr and Randy Johnson were all going to return to Safeco Field wearing different uniforms and the Mariners were going to be horrible and the game wasn't going to be fun at all. Instead just the opposite happened the Mariners had 8 friggin All-Stars and we had the best record in baseball. Quick trivia question can you name all 8 All-Stars? Extra credit if you can name the original 6? The Answer will be at the bottom.
I remember the day of the game being a hot summer day and I couldn't wait for Drivers Education class to be over with. I was so excited to watch the biggest sporting event of the summer take place in my hometown and that game featured 8 Seattle Mariners as the Mariners had the best record in baseball. The game itself featured many memorable plays. Tommy Lasorda falling down on a flying bat from Vlad Guerrero, Arod asking Cal Ripken Jr to play SS in his final All-Star game, Ichiro beating Randy Johnson to first base for an infield single. Most of all the game was memorable because Cal Ripken Jr blasted a homerun off Chan Ho Park in the 3rd inning to deep left field in the bullpen. The crowd of 47,364 erupted as Cal hit the homerun. The crowd gave him several standing ovations. Ripken would win the All-Star game MVP in his final All-Star game. That game also honored Tony Gwynn who was playing in his last season as well. Former Mariners Randy Johnson and Arod started the games and Ken Griffey Jr was hurt that year. The American League won the game 4-1as Seattle Mariners pitcher Freddy Garcia got the Win and closer Kaz Sasaski got the save. That is the only time in Major League history that the host city had the winning pitcher and have the closing pitcher get the save in the same game.
I have never in my life been more excited to be a baseball fan than I was that summer. I had just completed my first year of highschool and my Mariners were on their way to winning a record 116 games. That was a special season for me as a kid who would turn 16 in the fall. The season ended dissapointing but on that day Me and the rest of Seattle we were on cloud 9. The Beautiful Stadium was on full display and the city of Seattle passed with flying colors.
Okay you have the answer to the trivia question yet? The answers are the starters were Ichiro Suzuki(leadoff hitter), Brett Boone(hit 4th and cleanup), John Olerud(hit 6th) and Edgar Martinez(hit 7th). The reserves were Freddy Garcia and Kaz Sasaski. The two other injury replacements were Mike Cameron and Jeff Nelson.