13 Jul

star dates

For the first time in 30 years, a Mississippi State alumnus will start in the All-Star Game. (It’s been a good year for State.) Adam Frazier draws the honor at second base, batting ninth, for the National League in tonight’s All-Star Game at Coors Field in Denver. The last State alum to start in the Midsummer Classic was Will Clark with San Francisco in 1991. In 2017, Mississippi had two All-Star starters: former Ole Miss star Zack Cozart for the NL and Meridian Community College product Corey Dickerson for the AL. Frazier, batting .330 for Pittsburgh, was voted in as the NL second baseman by fans. It’s his first All-Star appearance. MSU alum Brandon Woodruff of Milwaukee and Ole Miss product Lance Lynn of the Chicago White Sox were chosen as pitchers by fellow players, but Woodruff was scratched from the NL roster because he started Sunday. Former East Central CC star Tim Anderson of the White Sox made his first All-Star Game as a replacement player at shortstop. … Thirty years ago, at Toronto’s SkyDome, former State stars Clark and Rafael Palmeiro were on opposing sides; the “Thunder and Lightning” duo had been teammates on the NL team in 1988. Clark went 1-for-2 with a walk for the NL in ’91, and Palmeiro, with Texas at the time, came off the bench and walked in his only plate appearance for the AL. A Cal Ripken homer sparked the AL to a 4-2 win. … This year marks the 80th anniversary of one of the most dramatic home runs in All-Star Game history, the game-ending, two-out, three-run shot by Ted Williams against Waynesboro native Claude Passeau at Briggs Stadium in Detroit. Said Williams after the game: “Halfway down to first, seeing that ball going out, I stopped running and started leaping and jumping and clapping my hands, and I was so happy I laughed out loud.” … Forty years ago, the All-Star Game at Cleveland’s Municipal Stadium marked the first time players got back on the field following the strike and drew a crowd of 72,000-plus. In the sixth inning, Grenada native Dave Parker hit a blast into the right-center field seats that gave the National League the lead en route to a 5-4 win. That’s one of just four All-Star Game homers by Mississippi natives. (George Scott, Frank White and Brian Dozier hit the others.) … Ten years ago, at Chase Field in Arizona, Meridian CC alum Cliff Lee, then with Cleveland, gave up a homer to Adrian Gonzalez in his one inning of work in the NL’s 5-1 win. Lee, a somewhat underrated 143-game winner in the majors, was making the third of four All-Star appearances.

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