The American League won its third consecutive All-Star Game 6-3, leaving the National League scratching their heads as to what they could have done differently.
Here is what went wrong for the National League squad:
1. Letting Clayton Kershaw pitch
Kershaw was the losing pitcher on record for the 86th Annual Midsummer classic after he gave up 3 hits and 2 earned runs in just 1 inning. Kershaw was a late addition to the roster, replacing Max Scherzer, who was ruled unavailable to pitch because of his start on Sunday for the Washington Nationals.
National League All-Star manager Bruce Bochy should not have had played the struggling Kershaw for the entire inning, let alone in the game at all. Bochy should have played Pittsburgh Pirates’ pitcher A.J. Burnett instead. Burnett has been great for the Pirates this year with his 7-3 records, 2.11 ERA, and 100 strikeouts. This was Burnett’s first and last time being in the All-Star game, as 2015 is his final season after 17 years in the big leagues. Bochy had many opportunities the put Burnett in the game, but failed to make the right decision.
2. Not taking Bryce Harper out after unsuccessful at-bats
The much talked about Nationals star was everything but a star in the All-Star game. Harper was 0-3 with 2 strikeouts and has yet to get a hit in his All-Star career, but the manager decided to keep Harper in the game until the 7th inning. Bochy should have replaced Harper earlier in the game with either Justin Upton or Ryan Braun. Upton entered the game in the 7th inning and singled and stole a base. Braun did not enter the game until the 9th inning where he tripled and scored a run.
Let’s just face it- Bruce Bochy did not manage this National League team like he has been able to manager his San Francisco Giants team to 3 World Series wins in the past 5 years. The team had the talent to win, but did not use the right players at the right times.
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