The 2018 MLB All-Star Game offered us a perfect microcosm of the season as the American League topped the National League 8-6.
Players were striking out like crazy, the weather gave fans a fright and seemingly all the runs came via the homer in Washington on Tuesday.
However, the most interesting things during the game could not always be seen during the broadcast.
Here are seven things you may have missed at the Midsummer Classic.
1. AN EARLY WELCOME
National League manager Dave Roberts gave Washington Nationals ace Max Scherzer the ball to start the game and the fans loved it. They enjoyed it so much they actually gave Scherzer a standing ovation before the game even started. They cheered him for a solid minute when he was walking out to warm up for his start. With the All-Star game, it is easy to say this guy, or this guy should have started, but the cool thing about it now is that it really does not matter and home town teams can get these moments without someone questioning whether it affected a league's chances to get home-field advantage.
2. JOSE ALTUVE'S FIRST HIT
One of the best hitters in baseball came into the night 0 for eight in All-Star games. He almost looked like he was going to leave his fourth appearance at the classic without a hit as he went 0 for two to start the night. But in his third at-bat he finally poked one into right field to tally his first hit in an All-Star game. And while he loved it, his fellow major leaguers loved it even more. Mike Trout hugged him, Matt Kemp gave him a shake of the shoulders, and Manny Machado gave him props. Altuve, though, was sure to cherish the moment. He even asked for the ball.
Jose asking for the ball after the hit is amazing. pic.twitter.com/z7snVNrymX— Houston Astros (@astros) July 18, 2018
3. THE CLYDESDALES SHOWED UP
OK, this is a silly one, but the Budweiser Clydesdales showed up on the field before the game. It is not often you see that especially in warm weather that is laced with humidity.
4. THE FIELD WAS FLOODED
Before the game there was a D.C. equivalent of a monsoon. The field was flooded with water and was covered almost 75 per cent with H2O. But props to the Nationals. They got it clean and clear and made the field playable. The before and after shots are crazy. These are a mere four hours apart.
5. THE YANKS GET A HIT
One would think that a storied franchise like the New York Yankees would have gobs of hits in the All-Star game the last four years. One would be wrong. In fact, Aaron Judge's home run off Scherzer was the first Yankee hit since 2014. Who would have thought?
6. ALWAYS COACHING
A.J. Hinch joked at Monday's presser that he did not realise there would be much strategy in the game. He was either clearly kidding or avoiding showing his hand because he employed the shift in the second inning on Brandon Crawford and then left Blake Snell in for a second inning during the middle of the game as two of the next three batters were left-handed. Maybe Hinch wants some more bragging rights over NL manager and friend Roberts?
7. THE SELFIE NOT HEARD ROUND THE WORLD
Everyone saw Baltimore Orioles star Manny Machado take a selfie with Los Angeles Dodgers outfield Matt Kemp in the second inning and then they drew the conclusion that he is all but moving on to Los Angeles in a trade that is likely to be official on Wednesday. Almost no one noticed another selfie Machado took as he stood on second base with Atlanta Braves right fielder Nick Markakis and posed for a picture again. The two were team-mates from 2012-2014 in Baltimore. So while the Machado trade to the Dodgers may be a done deal, Machado may not have been posing with Kemp to confirm it.
|Seahawks rally past Packers|
|Lakers G Rondo to miss 4-5 weeks|
|Durant is done with questions about Green|
|Smith, Warner set to return to IPL in 2019|
|No rivalry between Mbappe and Griezmann – Deschamps|
|Neymar: Emery will bring success to Arsenal|
|Jedvaj backs Croatia to deliver against England|
|Howell grabs first-round lead at Sea Island|
|Rooney backing Kane to break England record|
|Betts named American League MVP|
|Republic of Ireland must improve, says under-pressure O´Neill|
|Injured Sergio Ramos to leave Spain squad|
|Yelich named National League MVP|
|Low praises ´beautiful goals´ from Sane and Gnabry|
|Belgium boss Martinez pleased with patient Batshuayi|
|Wilson and Sancho pay tribute to England ´legend´ Rooney|
|Rooney gave England squad a lesson in humility - Southgate|
|This Week in U.S. Sports: LeBron passes Chamberlain, Williamson looking like he is next|
|We still have a chance - Luis Enrique not giving up hope after Spain defeat|
|Rockets ´parting ways´ with Anthony|
|Rooney became ´embarrassed´ at Manchester United|
|Federer: ´Easier´ to play when I´m up against it|
|Rooney convinced England are in safe hands with Southgate|
|Black Caps skipper Williamson confident over first Test availability|
|Federer cruises into last four of ATP Finals for 15th time|
|Republic of Ireland 0 Northern Ireland 0: Randolph saves light up bore draw|
|England 3 United States 0: Experimental side impresses on Rooney farewell|
|Croatia 3 Spain 2: Jedvaj keeps World Cup finalists in contention|
|Belgium 2 Iceland 0: Batshuayi rekindles Hazard flame with match-winning brace|
|Germany 3 Russia 0: Sane on target as Low´s men stroll|
|´Fancy taking a look at Brexit?´ - Southampton credit Austin with VAR breakthrough|
|Green: Altercation with Durant will make Warriors stronger|
|Juventus star Dybala dismisses Manchester United links|
|Strinic given all clear to return to AC Milan training|
|Papier wait over as scrum-half starts for Springboks|
|MLB commissioner Manfred gets five-year extension|
|South Africa international Du Preez joins brother at Sale|
|Pogba and Sterling support my football dream, says Bolt|
|Asensio wants to ´feel more important´ at Real Madrid|
|Former Roosters and Cowboys centre Linnett joins Hull KR|
|New team tournament ATP Cup wins Djokovic´s approval|
|Roma and Pallotta donate €150,000 to injured Liverpool fan Sean Cox|
|England captain Root reprimanded on frustrating day in Pallekele|
|Jokanovic proud of establishing Fulham´s ´footballing identity´|
|Huget to make first France appearance in a year|
|Mourinho and squad ´united´ despite ´mixed´ start, says Woodward|
|Petaia and Gordon to make Wallabies debuts in Padova|
|Barcelona star Arthur determined not to let Xavi praise go to his head|
|Youthful Netherlands have forged strong bond - Wijnaldum|
|Premier League confirms £5m package for departing chief Scudamore|
|Thiem blasts past Nishikori to keep semi-final hopes alive|
|He´s always got time for me – Gerrard loved learning from Liverpool boss Klopp|
|Kearney and Ringrose return for All Blacks clash|
|Molinari on course for Race to Dubai title, Smith and Otaegui lead|
|Premier League to implement VAR from 2019-20 season|
|FSF urges Premier League clubs to reject Scudamore ´golden handshake´ request|
|Rhinos pull off Merrin coup|
|Ribery apologises for reporter altercation|
|Ford to captain much-changed England, Cokanasiga starts|
|Crotty replaces injured Williams for Ireland showdown|
|Classy Roshen gives Sri Lanka unlikely lead|
|Injured Lukaku out of Belgium-Iceland Nations League clash|
|Rooney ´passionate´ about future coaching career|
|Mehidy spins Tigers to victory despite second Taylor hundred|
|Rooney deserves special England day - Antonio|
|LeBron thinks back to his roots after latest milestone|
|Messi to return for Argentina next year - General manager Burruchaga|
|Walton salutes LeBron after he surpasses Chamberlain|
|Croatia´s Dalic and Modric not out for Spain revenge|
|Rondo to miss ´a few weeks´ with broken hand|