MLB All-Stars in the NL West and AL WestDate: July 6, 2019
By: Justin Morris
It’s that time of year in the MLB again. We’ve reached the early part of July (hope the fourth was eventful and safe for everyone) and so welcomes baseball’s annual “Midsummer Classic”, this year’s being the 90th installment of the league’s beloved All-Star game.
Hard to believe we’ve already reached the midway point of summer as the year continues to fly by, but for baseball, this marks the halfway point in the season, a time for players kick back and revel in the enjoyment of a special gathering of talent at the All-Star events, but also time to batten down the hatches upon returning to their cities as they make preparations for their respective playoff pushes.
The host city this year will be Cleveland, marking the sixth time The Land will hold the festivities, (first since 1997) and that’s exactly what they’ve become. What was once the pinnacle of baseball stardom, a collection of the most special talents the league had to offer in a one-game showcase remains that, now with plenty of extra entertainment to boot.
Since its inception, the home run Derby has only escalated in popularity, with five of its top ten viewership numbers ever coming within the last 10. This unsurprisingly comes with an unrivaled spike in power numbers within the last 10 years on the field (hitters are well on pace to smash their previously set record of 6,105 total homers, set just two years earlier) within the league as a whole, and this year’s edition isn’t hurt by names like Christian Yelich, Josh Bell and Vladimir Guerrero Jr.
Prior to the derby will be the All-Star Legends & Celebrity softball game, which, as you might be able to imagine by the title, is dominated by baseball legends, mainly hall of famers who look like they haven’t lost a step on the diamond. Still though, the game is a good time, and usually sports a solid mixture of favorite baseball heroes like Rickey Henderson and Ozzie Smith, and notable names in plenty of industries outside of baseball, including Snoop Dogg, John Wall and Terry Crews.
It promises to be an unforgettable string of days, and while fans will undoubtedly get plenty of kicks and excitement out of the events side attractions, the spotlight remains on the field for the game Tuesday night, and the stars themselves.
Out west, things are looking bright for the baseball world. There is no shortage of representation in 2019 from the league’s Western divisions, who are sending a respectably high number of players to the game. These players from the AL and NL’s west divisions earned All-Star distinctions:
Astros (six): Alex Bregman, George Springer, Justin Verlander, Gerrit Cole, Michael Brantley, and Ryan Pressly
Rangers (three): Joey Gallo, Mike Minor, Hunter Pence
Angels (two): Mike Trout, Tommy La Stella
Athletics (two): Liam Hendricks, Matt Chapman
Mariners (one): Daniel Vogelbach
Dodgers (five): Cody Bellinger, Walker Buehler, Clayton Kershaw, Max Muncy and Hyun-jin Ryu
Rockies (four): Charlie Blackmon, David Dahl, Nolan Arenado and Trevor Story
Diamondbacks (one): Zack Greinke
Giants (one): Will Smith
Padres (one): Kirby Yates
The game is scheduled to be played Tuesday night at 7:30 ET. It will be a spectacle, a time for the league’s best to take the pressure from the game and do what they do best: play it freely.
Justin Morris can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.