|NL leads 1-0 after third inning of All-Star game|
|Written by Admin|
|Tuesday, 10 July 2007 15:53|
Bonds predictably got the longest and loudest ovations in pregame introductions and when he came up to the plate second in the first inning for the first time ever in his home ballpark in San Francisco. Bonds hasn't started a regular-season game in the No. 2 hole since June 6, 1987, according to the Elias Sports Bureau, although he batted second in the 1993 All-Star game at Baltimore.
Usually counted on to drive runners in from the cleanup spot, Bonds did not deliver in his new role. Jose Reyes singled and stole second to lead off the game but Bonds popped out to shallow right field, keeping Reyes at stuck at second. Griffey made up for it with a two-out RBI single against Dan Haren from Bonds' usual spot in the lineup.
Bonds came up again with a runner on second and no outs in the third inning after Reyes hit a grounder off the lip of the grass that bounced past third baseman Alex Rodriguez for a double. This time, Bonds showed bunt on the first pitch from Josh Beckett before a flyout to the warning track in left field that again left Reyes at second.
Bonds exited after the third inning, with Alfonso Soriano of the Chicago Cubs replacing the Giants star in left field.
Haren, pitching just across the bay from his home ballpark in Oakland, allowed the one run with two hits and two strikeouts in two innings.
Beckett pitched a scoreless third inning for AL manager Jim Leyland, who became the fifth man to manage both leagues in the All-Star game.
NL starter Jake Peavy pitched only one inning, allowing a leadoff single to Ichiro Suzuki in a scoreless first. Brad Penny, who started last year's game for the NL and was in the running to start this year's, relieved Peavy and pitched a perfect second inning.
Ben Sheets allowed two hits in the third before retiring David Ortiz on a flyout to right field for NL manager Tony La Russa, who was hoping to become the first manager to win the All-Star game in both leagues.
The AL has won nine straight times and has not lost since 1996 in Philadelphia. There was, of course, a tie game in 2002 in Milwaukee. Once again, the league that wins this game will have home-field advantage in the World Series.
Before the game, there was a moving tribute to Giants great Willie Mays, who was greeted by all the All-Stars on a stage he owned more than any other player. Mays played in a record 24 All-Star games and also holds the records for most at-bats, runs and hits.
The game also marked the final All-Star appearance for home plate umpire Bruce Froemming, who will retire following his record 37th season in the big leagues. This is Froemming's third All-Star appearance.