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Encyclopedia of Cleveland History

BASEBALL ALL-STAR GAMES

BASEBALL ALL-STAR GAMES

The BASEBALL ALL-STAR GAMES were held at CLEVELAND MUNICIPAL STADIUM 4 times, on 8 July 1935, 13 July 1954, 9 July 1963, and 9 August 1981. The 1997 All-Star Game was held at Jacobs Field. The 1935, 1954, and 1981 games set All-Star attendance records. The original All-Star Game was proposed by Chicago Tribune sports editor Arch Ward for the 1933 Chicago Century of Progress exposition, and its popularity led to its adoption as an annual event. At the 1935 game, a crowd of 69,381 watched New York Yankee pitcher Lefty Gomez and Cleveland pitcher Mel Harder hold the National League to just 4 hits, with the American League winning 4-1. Jimmie Foxx of the Philadelphia Athletics drove in 3 runs for the AL, including the game's only home run.

The crowd and players stand for the National Anthem at the 1954 All Star Game held at Cleveland's Municipal Stadium, 13 July 1954The crowd and players stand for the National Anthem at the 1954 All Star Game held at Cleveland's Municipal Stadium, 13 July 1954

In the 1954 game, played before 68,751, Cleveland's Al Rosen hit 2 home runs and drove in 5 runs to tie an All-Star Game record, and the AL won 11-9. Washington's Dean Stone entered the game with 2 on and 2 out in the 8th inning with the NL ahead 9-8, and threw out the NL runner trying to steal home. Cleveland's Larry Doby tied the score with a home run in the bottom of the 8th, and Chicago's Nellie Fox blooped a single to drive in the go-ahead runs. Virgil Trucks pitched a scoreless 9th inning, preserving the victory for Stone.

A disappointing crowd of 44,160 attended the 1963 game. San Francisco's Willie Mays led the NL to a 5-3 victory by driving in 2 runs, stealing 2 bases, and scoring twice. A record 72,086 crowd watched the 1981 All-Star Game, where the NL won its 10th consecutive victory 5-4. All 5 NL runs came as the result of home runs.

In 1997, Sandy Alomar Jr. hit a two-run homer in the left field bleachers in the seventh inning to lead the American League to a 3-1 victory at the jam-packed Jacobs Field. Alomar became the first Indian to homer in a major-league All-Star game since Rocky Colavito did so in the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum in 1959. Alomar became the first Indian ever to win the game's Most Valuable Player award and the first ever to win the award while playing in his home park. The crowd of 44,916 set an attendance record for Jacobs Field.