WASHINGTON -- Bryce Harper was the star of the show Monday night, but even the Nationals superstar knows who the best player in baseball is: Michael Trout."If you don't, then you're not watching," Harper said on the FOX broadcast in the third inning during Tuesday's All-Star Game presented by Mastercard.
WASHINGTON -- Bryce Harper was the star of the show Monday night, but even the Nationals superstar knows who the best player in baseball is: Michael Trout.
"If you don't, then you're not watching," Harper said on the FOX broadcast in the third inning during Tuesday's All-Star Game presented by Mastercard. "This guy is day in and day out, year in and year out, one of the best in all of baseball."
The subject came up after Trout obliterated a Jacob deGrom two-seam fastball, sending it into the American League bullpen in left-center field. Harper, who was joining the broadcast from the field during the half-inning, knew Trout had gone yard right away.
"That's gone," Harper said, as he watched the ball sail toward the outfield. "How good is he, huh? I love watching him play, man. Special player."
Trout finished his night 1-for-2 with a walk in the AL's 8-6, 10-inning victory, giving him a hit in all six of his All-Star Game appearances. (He was chosen for a seventh but did not play due to injury.)
Trout joined Hall of Famers Joe Morgan and Willie Mays as the only players with a hit in each of their first six All-Star Games after becoming the fourth American Leaguer to start six Midsummer Classics before his 27th birthday. The latter list is populated by more Hall of Famers: Joe DiMaggio, Mickey Mantle and Ivan Rodriguez.
Trout also became the third AL player with two career All-Star Game homers before turning 27. The two others: Al Kaline and Mantle.
"I just get a pitch and barrel it. That's how I get hits," Trout said. "It's always good to get out there and get a hit, get some ABs and it was just a good experience."
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Since Trout was born in August 1991, Alfonso Soriano has more All-Star homers than any other player, hitting three. Behind him? A five-way tie between Trout, Mike Piazza, Barry Bonds, Andruw Jones and Roberto Alomar with two apiece.
"For me, it's just trying to keep it simple," Trout said. "I can't really keep up with trying to do too much, just keep it simple, keep my swing short."
His third-inning home run came two innings after Trout battled National League starter Max Scherzer for an eight-pitch walk in the first inning, denying Scherzer a 1-2-3 inning after the Nationals right-hander struck out the AL's first two batters of the night.
In the third, deGrom got ahead of Trout, 1-2, before trying to finish him off. Trout turned on the 92-mph pitch and sent the ball soaring into the AL bullpen in left-center, doubling his team's lead to 2-0.
"deGrom's a good pitcher, man," Trout said during an in-game interview on FOX. "I just got a pitch down where I like it and put the barrel on it, and it went over the fence."
Although his home run was his highlight, Trout seemed more excited by the opportunity to have his cell phone with him in the outfield, allowing him to take a selfie with fellow outfield starters Aaron Judge and Mookie Betts during a pitching change.
"I think the fans want to see that. I enjoyed it," Trout said. "The fans see us on the field, but not what we're doing in the clubhouse or the dugout or in the outfield, and that was a cool moment."
Mark Feinsand, an executive reporter, originally joined MLB.com as a reporter in 2001.