Pedro Martínez was en route to joining Carl Hubbell's 1934 feat (where he struck out five consecutive batters at an All-Star Game) when he started for the American League on July 13, 1999, at the All-Star Game in Boston.
But an error broke Martínez' streak just one strikeout short, though he still finished the two-inning outing with five total Ks. (He and catcher Iván Rodríguez executed a "strike 'em out throw 'em out" double play to end the half).
Twenty years later, Martínez remembers that game as the most unique All-Star Game in his lifetime.
Besides his performance on the mound, Martínez still reminisces about the scene prior to the game. He remembers both All-Star teams (plus 31 other top-100 players) surrounding Ted Williams, who, at 80 years old, returned to Fenway Park and took a "victory lap" around the field.
"The game seemed like it would never start," Martínez said in an interview.
He remembers shaking Hank Aarons' hand, and a one-on-one interaction he had with Williams.
"Ted Williams [called] me aside and [told] me I was one hell of a pitcher," Martínez said. "When you have the cream of baseball in the field and they recognize you and they want to shake your hands and they want to make you part of that they were, it's a bigger trophy than the actual trophy...it's the respect of the cream of baseball... and I got that opportunity."
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The Brewers. They are surging instead of sliding, partying in St. Louis over the weekend after winning two of three against the division-leading Cardinals thanks to a ninth-inning grand slam by Ryan Braun on Sunday.
They have won nine of 10 and six of seven since MVP candidate Christian Yelich broke his kneecap, ending his season. Things are tight because of their run. Just two weeks remain in the regular season.
So, here’s where things stand overall:
- Chicago is 1 ½ games behind the Nationals for the top wild-card spot.
- Milwaukee is 2 ½ games behind the Nationals and just a game behind the Cubs. Those three teams mark a breaking point in the standings.
- The Mets are four games behind the Cubs for the second wild-card spot and 5 ½ behind the Nationals.
- Philadelphia is six games behind the Nationals and 4 ½ games behind Chicago after back-to-back losses to end the weekend.
Fivethirtyeight.com puts the Nationals chances of making the postseason at 93 percent.
Coming up Monday:
San Diego at Milwaukee, 7:40 p.m., Richards (5-4, 3.66 ERA) vs. Davies (9-7, 3.77)
Washington at St. Louis, 7:45 p.m., Strasburg (17-6, 3.49) vs. D. Hudson (15-7, 3.38)
Cincinnati at Chicago, 8:05 p.m., Gausman (3-8, 5.83) vs. Hamels (7-7, 3.89)
New York Mets at Colorado, Matz (10-8, 3,84) vs. Senzatela (9-10, 6.87)
Philadelphia is off.
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WASHINGTON -- Nationals manager Davey Martinez left the dugout in the sixth inning on Sunday after not feeling well.
Team physicians assessed him and decided the best course of action was for Martinez to go to a local hospital for further examination. Bench coach Chip Hale replaced Martinez for the remainder of the Nationals' 7-0 win against Atlanta on Sunday afternoon.
"So, just for precautionary reasons, they took him to the hospital to see what's going on, but we're expecting everything to be good," Hale said.
The team, set to fly to St. Louis on Sunday night, was informed postgame.
"I don't know what's going on, so I can't really speak on that," Howie Kendrick said. "I knew, I think it was the fifth inning, maybe? And then Chip took over as manager. Then after that, all you can worry about is hopefully, he's doing great. I wish him the best. I love Davey. We talk pretty much every day. He's got a lot of insight and I've known him for years -- playing against him in the American League, too. He's done a great job this year. I wish him the best right now. Like I said, I don't know what's really going on, but hopefully it's nothing major."
Hale said Martinez, 54, in his second year as the team's manager, is expected to join the team in St. Louis.
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