Today in All-Star Game history: Hubbell strikes out five straight HOF-ers, Ichiro's inside-the-parker
Guess what? It's almost time for the MLB All-Star Game presented by Mastercard! In preparation, we're taking a look back into All-Star Game history and showcasing some epic and memorable plays from Midsummer Classics of yore. Check back each day from now until July 12 for more This Day in All-Star Game History.
Ichiro hits a stand-up, inside-the-park home run
"Go, go, go, Ichiro,
Rounding third and heading for home."
Those are lyrics from Ben Gibbard's ode to Ichiro Suzuki , but double as what broadcasters were saying at AT&T Park in 2007 when Ichiro hit a stand-up, inside-the-park home run in the top of the fifth inning.
With one out in the fifth and Orioles infielder Brian Roberts standing on first, Ichiro took Padres pitcher Chris Young deep to right-center field. The ball took a strange carom, reversing course and headed into right field proper as Roberts came around to score and Ichiro followed. Ichiro already had two hits to his name in the early goings, so the 3-for-3 performance earned him an MVP trophy.The AL eventually won, 5-4, extending their reign/unbeaten streak to 11 years (10 wins, plus the infamous tie of 2002).
Tommy Lasorda takes a tumble
You just saw all the grace eminating from Ichiro as he rounded the bases with ease. Now imagine the exact inverse of that and you get Tommy Lasorda falling over when hit with a broken bat in 2001.
NL manager Bobby Valentine, whose first Minor League manager was Lasorda when he managed the Ogden Dodgers in 1968 (a squad that also included Bill Buckner and Steve Garvey), invited the legend to the game to serve as the NL's honorary manager and third-base coach -- a role he filled in his first Major League coaching stint on Walter Alston's staff in 1973.
In the sixth inning, Vladimir Guerrero was in the batter's box and took a monster cut at a Mike Stanton (not to be confused with the slugger formerly known as "Mike" Stanton) offering. The bat snapped down near the handle and the barrel shot up the third-base line where Lasorda couldn't get out of the way.
He turned out to be A-OK, though, so it's socially acceptable to giggle at his little floor routine.
William Shatner hosts "Rescue 9-1-1" instead?
The 1990 Midsummer Classic featured a 30-minute rain delay, which CBS used to air an episode of "Rescue 9-1-1," a show hosted by William Shatner that featured dramatic re-enactments of real life-or-death situations.
Fernando Valenzuela and Dwight Gooden combine to strike out six straight batters
The year? 1984. The score? 2-1, NL, heading into the fourth. That lead? Secure, because 1981 NL Cy Young Award winner Fernando Valenzuela struck out Hall of Famer Dave Winfield, Hall of Famer Reggie Jackson and Hall of Famer George Brett in the fourth inning. Eventual 1984 NL Rookie of the Year Doc Gooden followed up that performance by striking out the side in the fifth.
Dale Murphy added a solo homer in the eighth, because sure, why not? The NL won by a final of 3-1. Oh, and Huey Lewis and The News sang the national anthem before the game, in case that's your thing.
The Legend of Carl Hubbell: The Man Who Tamed the Hall of Famers
You thought Valenzuela and Doc were impressive? Try this on for size: Seventeen of the 18 players in the starting lineups of the 1934 All-Star Game have since been enshrined in the Baseball Hall of Fame, including Giants pitcher Carl Hubbell -- who struck out five of them in a row.
After surrendering a hit to Charlie Gehringer (understandably) and walking Heinie Manush, Hubbell struck out Babe Ruth, Lou Gehrig, Jimmie Foxx, Al Simmons and Joe Cronin consecutively in the first and second innings. A slugfest later broke out as the AL won 9-7.
A version of this piece originally ran on July 10, 2015.