The 88th MLB All-Star Game takes place this week in Miami, with Salvador Perez, Jason Vargas, and Mike Moustakas all representing the Kansas City Royals. The star-studded game will be the main event, but there are other events leading up to the Midsummer Classic that you may want to check out.
Yesterday was the Futures Game, where minor league stars of tomorrow take the field in a matchup of Team USA vs. Team World. Team USA was victorious this time around, with Royals pitching prospect Foster Griffin retiring the only two batters he faced.
Today, players and managers will address the media, with American League manager Brad Mills (bench coach for the Indians filling in for Terry Francona, who is absent for health reasons) and National League manager Joe Maddon revealing lineups and their pick for starting pitchers. It will likely be Chris Sale and Max Scherzer to start the game, although Kansas City’s Jason Vargas should get in the game fairly early.
Tonight is the Home Run Derby, featuring the top sluggers in the game, including Kansas City’s own Mike Moustakas. Moose, who is third in the American League in home runs with 25, is just the third Royals hitter ever to participate in the Derby, joining Bo Jackson (1989) and Danny Tartabull (1991).
Yankees slugger Aaron Judge and Marlins slugger Giancarlo Stanton headline the event that will also feature Marlins first baseman Justin Bour, Rockies outfielder Charlie Blackmon, Dodgers outfielder Cody Bellinger, Yankees catcher Gary Sanchez, and Twins third baseman Miguel Sano. Moustakas is seeded #4 in the Derby, and will go up against Sano in the opening round. You can fill out your Home Run Derby bracket at MLB.com and win a chance to go to the World Series. The Derby airs at 7 p.m. on ESPN, and thankfully, will no longer include Chris Berman.
Following the Derby will be the All-Star Legends & Celebrity Softball Game, which actually took place on Sunday, but will air Monday at 9 p.m. CT on ESPN. The game is a light athletic competition that will mostly leave you saying “who is that?” but there are a few legit celebrities like uh, you know, that guy from that show. Also, hat singer girl. And former Royals catcher Benito Santiago!
There will be a red carpet parade through Miami at 2 p.m. CT on Tuesday, to air on MLB Network that features this year’s All-Stars and their guests. Finally, the main event will be the All-Star Game Tuesday night from Marlins Park, with coverage beginning on FOX at 7 p.m. CT. Joe Buck and John Smoltz will call the action with Ken Rosenthal and Tom Verducci reporting from the field. The game will no longer determine home field advantage in the World Series, but that doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy an exhibition game of baseball!
Will you be watching this week? What is our favorite part of All-Star week?