D-backs first baseman, catcher enjoy playing in Jeter's final All-Star Game
Barry M. Bloom
MINNEAPOLIS -- If memories are made of things like this, D-backs All-Stars Miguel Montero and Paul Goldschmidt will long remember playing in Derek Jeter's final Midsummer Classic.
"It was great to be in the last one Jeter played in. That was something special," Montero said after the National League's 5-3 loss to its American League counterparts on Tuesday night at Target Field.
"It was awesome. It was an unforgettable experience. I can tell my kids and they actually were in the stadium when daddy played against Jeter in his last All-Star Game."
It was Montero's second All-Star appearance, and like 2011 at his home base of Chase Field, he was the third catcher to play for the NL, entering as a defensive replacement in the eighth inning.
"At least this time I got an at-bat," said Montero, who flied out to center off Twins closer Glen Perkins to open a 1-2-3 ninth.
Goldschmidt was voted by the fans to start at first base and went 0-for-3 in his second All-Star appearance. He grounded out to third with a runner on third to end the first inning and struck out swinging with a runner on second to finish off the fifth. Last year, he came in to replace Joey Votto in a 3-0 NL loss and had a double in two at-bats.
Goldschmidt's big moment was a diving stop to his right on a hot grounder off the bat of Oakland's Josh Donaldson. After laying flat out, Goldschmidt then flipped the ball to Cardinals reliever Pat Neshek, who nearly stumbled as he tagged the base.
"It was just a quick reaction," Goldschmidt said. "You just see the ball coming at you, and you try to go get it and make the play. Fortunately, it was within my reach."
Goldschmidt had a chance to interact briefly with Jeter when the Yankees captain singled to lead off the third inning. For a moment, there was Goldschmidt holding Jeter on as he took a lead off first base.
Did Goldschmidt say anything?
"No, not really," Goldschmidt said. "I said, 'Good luck the rest of the year.' Did I shake his hand? I don't remember. He said, 'Good luck. Keep it going.' Something along those lines. It was quick. We're out there playing. He's working on running and I wanted to make sure I was playing defense."
Montero, who is as verbose as Goldschmidt is reticent, said it's hard to know what to do in those situations. Montero said he never even had a chance to say hello to Jeter.
"If he hadn't gotten in the [batter's] box, I wouldn't have known what to even say to him," Montero said. "A lot of emotions are going through you. After the game you realize, 'I should have said something to him.' But it doesn't matter. It was just nice."