Reusse: All-Star Game was a huge hit

  • Article by: PATRICK REUSSE , Star Tribune
  • Updated: July 16, 2014 - 11:49 PM

Fans and players stepped to the plate for Target Field’s moment in the sun (and rain).

hide

Miguel Cabrera of the Detroit Tigers celebrates with Nelson Cruz of Baltimore after Cabrera's first inning home run during the All Star Game at Target Field on July 15, 2014 in Minneapolis

Photo: Jerry Holt, DML - Star Tribune Star Tribune

CameraStar Tribune photo galleries

Cameraview larger

St. Louis manager Mike Matheny, Fox TV reporter Erin Andrews and other apologists attempted to blame “social media’’ for the mess in which pitcher Adam Wainwright found himself at Tuesday night’s All-Star Game.

Wainwright was the National League starter and opened the bottom of the first by allowing a double to Derek Jeter. He gave up three runs in his one inning, and then told reporters outside the clubhouse that his plan was to give Jeter a couple of “pipe shots’’ in that at-bat.

Reporters listening to Wainwright in this in-game interview were quick to send along the “pipe shots’’ comment on Twitter. That doesn’t make it a controversy started by social media. This brouhaha was fueled by Wainwright, and Twitter served one of its purposes in allowing reporters to relay it to the public immediately.

Social media is not guilty on this one.

What was discovered during the three days of All-Star Game festivities at Target Field was that some of us might have placed too much stock in reactions on social media in assessing where baseball and the Twins stand with Minnesota’s sporting public at the moment.

I put the comments we see from agitated folks on newspaper websites and blogs in the social media category, along with king Twitter and other public forums. And the level of Twins bashing in these areas has been so persistent for four years that it’s easy to get the impression all of Minnesota has turned hostile to the Twins and given up on the Grand Old Game.

It was certain there would be full houses for Monday’s Home Run Derby and Tuesday’s game, what with Major League Baseball taking 13,000 of the 40,000 available tickets. MLB left that pile of tickets for the Twins to sell for Sunday’s Futures Game and softball skit.

To me, the size of Sunday’s crowd was going to be the key to finding out if there were still enough baseball fans around here to create a mid-July baseball fever.

“The people kept coming all day,’’ a Twins ticket manager said that night. “We had a huge walk-up.’’

In the end, 34,000 people actually went through the gates, larger than most Futures/softball crowds in other host cities of recent times.

On Monday, the weather was awful, but the ballyard was full for the Home Run Derby. People did leave early, but once you’ve seen Giancarlo Stanton blast one that almost left the building in left field and you’re freezing, why stay?

Then came the game. One word: glorious.

I’ve never felt better about admitting that baseball has been and will continue to be my sport of sports than was the case while taking in Tuesday night’s scene at Target Field.

The quality of the athletes on display was stunning. Right away, Jeter makes a diving stop on a hot shot from Andrew McCutchen, and McCutchen turns into a blur and beats Jeter’s throw by two millimeters at first.

And then, in the bottom of the first, between Jeter’s double (gift or no gift) and Miguel Cabrera’s line-drive home run just above the flowers in left, there was muscular Mike Trout getting the ball past muscular Yasiel Puig in right field, and within three steps Trout was Adrian Peterson in the open field.

In fact, make it a 90-yard race with two left turns, and I’ll take Trout by a stride over our guy All Day.

Trout thundered to third as the crowd in Target Field let out a roar that came with an element of shock — that a young man this thick could be moving so fast. For those few seconds, Trout was the legendary “runaway train’’ of a million sportswriters’ articles.

When Trout arrived at third, there had been six batters in the 85th All-Star Game, and already there were more grand moments than in the full playing of the 56th in the Metrodome in July 1985.

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions

ADVERTISEMENT

New England 2/1/15 5:30 PM
Seattle
Portland 0 Postponed
Brooklyn 0
Sacramento 0 Postponed
New York 0
Philadelphia 74 FINAL
New Orleans 99
Minnesota 84 FINAL
Oklahoma City 92
Orlando 94 FINAL
Memphis 103
Boston 99 FINAL
Utah 90
Denver 98 FINAL
LA Clippers 102
Army 68 FINAL
American Univ 66
Wright State 64 FINAL
Detroit 53
Syracuse 83 FINAL
North Carolina 93
Cleveland State 56 FINAL
Oakland 59
Delaware State 54 FINAL
NC Central 55
High Point 63 FINAL
Presbyterian 54
Howard 45 FINAL
Bethune-Cookman 42
Coppin State 84 FINAL
NC A&T 71
Nicholls 51 FINAL
Northwestern St 80
Hampton 56 FINAL
SC State 65
Gardner-Webb 59 FINAL
Campbell 78
MD-Eastern Shore 72 FINAL
Florida A&M 65
Stephen F Austin 82 FINAL
Lamar 65
Central Arkansas 67 FINAL
New Orleans 87
Norfolk State 70 FINAL
Savannah State 54
TX A&M-CC 70 FINAL
SE Louisiana 61
Sam Houston St 80 FINAL
Abilene Christian 63
McNeese State 84 FINAL
Incarnate Word 86
Milwaukee 48 FINAL
Valparaiso 73
Alcorn State 66 FINAL
Alabama A&M 78
Southern U 59 FINAL
Alabama State 63
Prairie View 68 FINAL
Ark-Pine Bluff 105
Texas 86 FINAL
Iowa State 89
Texas Southern 85 FINAL
Miss Valley St 84
Long Island 85 FINAL
Bryant 88
Central Conn St 51 FINAL
St Francis-NY 49
Fairleigh Dickinson 0 Postponed
Sacred Heart 0
St Francis-PA 87 FINAL
Wagner 74
Delaware State 59 FINAL
NC Central 66
Howard 53 FINAL
Bethune-Cookman 61
Coppin State 49 FINAL
NC A&T 67
Hampton 88 FINAL
SC State 53
Norfolk State 54 FINAL
Savannah State 56
MD-Eastern Shore 54 FINAL
Florida A&M 64
Angelo State 55 FINAL
Abilene Christian 70
Samford 32 FINAL
(25) Chattanooga 49
Prairie View 83 FINAL
Ark-Pine Bluff 66
Alcorn State 58 FINAL
Alabama A&M 55
Southern U 53 FINAL
Alabama State 49
Texas Southern 63 FINAL
Miss Valley St 52
(12) Texas A&M 61 FINAL
(1) South Carolina 79
Robert Morris 68 FINAL
Mount St Marys 44
East Tenn St 72 FINAL
Mercer 70
Wofford 56 FINAL
Furman 58
Morehead St 64 FINAL
Tenn Tech 54
Illinois 57 FINAL
Michigan 70
Quinnipiac 0 Postponed
Manhattan 0
Saint Peters 0 Postponed
Rider 0
(18) Miss State 59 FINAL
Auburn 48
(15) Nebraska 72 FINAL
(20) Iowa 78
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

question of the day

Poll: How optimistic are you about the 2015 Twins?

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close