The American League followed one of their worst All-Star performances with one of the greatest efforts ever by either side. It was the 50th Anniversary of the All-Star Game and the American League decided to make it a real celebration.
After three decades of disappointment and eleven consecutive losses, the American League took the field with a vengeance and dominated the National League for nine straight innings. A seven-run third inning (all seven charged to Atlee Hammaker) gave the American League a 9-1 lead and that seemed safe even for the junior circuit.
The star player of the game was Fred Lynn, whose grand slam in the third was the first in All-Star history. National League manager Whitey Herzog had ordered Robin Yount, the preceding batter, walked intentionally, which turned out not to be a good idea. “I take it personally,” Lynn said later. By ’83, Lynn had four home runs and ten runs batted in with twenty All-Star at-bats. Only Ted Williams had a higher All-Star RBI count, with twelve in forty-six at-bats. Stan Musial had ten runs batted in, but in sixty-three at-bats. Lynn’s four homers tied him with Williams for the American League lead. The loss left the National League shell-shocked. They were no longer invincible.
This ESPN salute to the 1983 All Star Game was hosted by Chris Berman….who is still known in 2017 as “The Swame” and George Grande of “Inside Baseball” fame….of whom Imasportsphile has a great deal of video footage with both of these ESPN legends at the helm…as they interview AL Manager Dick Howser….who would manage the Kansas City Royals to the 1985 World Series Championship…and would soon there afterbe striken down by a brain tumor….and NL Whitey Herzog….who managed the St. Louis Cardinals to the 1982 World Series Championship. There are interviews with baseball legends Reggie Jackson, Pete Rose and Johnny Bench….along with highlights of the runaway victory by the American League….for this is a video special that is well worth watching.