On July 12, 1949, Ebbets Field in Flatbush hosted the 16th Annual Major League All-Star Game. It was the first time the ballpark in Brooklyn hosted the game, and the 3rd time for a New York National League squad.
The AL jumped out to a 4-0 lead before the NL even took the field. Warren struck out BOS RF Dom Dimaggio to start the game, but NYG 1B Johnny Mize couldn’t catch STL 3B Eddie Kazak‘s throw, and 2-hitter DET 3B George Kell reached 1st safely. Though Span struck out a Ted Williams who was ignoring his broken rib (with Kell stealing 2nd base), NYY CF Joe Dimaggio singled to left, and the AL had a 1-0 lead. Warren then walked PHA SS Eddie Joost, setting up an RBI single by CWS 1B Eddie Robinson, a run-scoring error on part of BRK SS Pee Wee Reese with CWS 2B Cass Michaels at bat, and an RBI single by BOS C Birdie Tebbetts. Spahn struck out the pitcher Parnell, but the damage was done.
The NL immediately made a game out of it. After the Flatbush Faithful willed Pee Wee leading off to make up for error, but to no avail, fan favorite BRK 2B Jackie Robinson delighted the crowd by doubling to left. STL CF Stan “The Man” Musial (as he was dubbed by that very Brooklyn crowd) delighted the spectators with a moon shot over the right field wall and onto Bedford Avenue, where many a children attempted to scramble for the ball. Though PIT LF Ralph Kiner popped out to the catcher and Mize struck out, the National League had cut the deficit in half.
The NL got 1 run closer in the bottom of the 2nd inning when BRK P Don Newcombe (who replaced Warren with 2 men on in the top of the 2nd) hit a bases-loaded sac fly to make it 4-3 AL. Pee Wee, though, grounded into a 4-6-3 double play to end the inning.
The NL tied the game and took the lead in the bottom of the 3rd. Facing DET RHP Virgil Trucks (who replaced Parnell in the bottom of the 2nd), Jackie walked and Musial singled, sending Robinson all the way to 3rd. Kiner then grounded into a 6-4-3 double play to plate Jackie without him having to steal home. Mize then singled, NYG RF Willard Marshall walked, and BRK 1B Gil Hodges replaced Mize at 2nd. Kazak then singled, scoring Hodges for the go-ahead 5th run.
Newcombe unfortunately gave that lead up in the top of the 4th inning on a 2-run single by Joost, giving the AL a 6-5 lead.
Things were rather quiet for a while as players entered in and out, until the AL stretched their lead in the top of the 6th with Joe Dimaggio plating two on a double off of BSN RHP Vern Bickford, giving the AL an 8-5 lead.
The NL wouldn’t go away, however, when Ralph Kiner, with the help of a Pee Wee Reese taking a walk, got the National League crew within a run on a homer to deep left field (I guess you could call that part of Ebbet Field…KINER’S KORNER (Badum…)
All kidding aside, the American League’s onslaught was no laughing matter for the hosting National League. The AL scored 3 more runs in the top of the 7th on a single by Dom Dimaggio, a single by STB 3B Bob Dillinger and a double by CLE LF Dale Mitchell.
The National League couldn’t muster up another rally, and lost 11-7.
It was the 3rd time in equal attempts that the AL beat the NL on their home turf in New York, as well as the 12th time in 16 exhibitions that the AL exuded superiority in the midsummer classic.
It’s beginning to get monotonous. It’s also beginning to get so scandalous that people are starting to talk. They are asking such embarrassing questions as whether the senior circuit should be accorded equal stature with its once junior partner. The records in interleague competition over the course of the years hardly would bear out that premise. The Americans have dominated the festivities so completely that the Nationals have exhausted all alibis and excuses.
Once upon a time the All-Star battle was a match between power and finesse, the American League batting power and the National League pitching finesse. But yesterday the senior loop proved that it had finally caught up with the junior circuit in power but it clean forgot that strong-arm hurling is of at least equal importance.”
–Arthur Daley, July 13, 1949, Sports of the Times: An Afternoon with the All-Stars, NYT
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