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Nipped by the Bud: Baseball’s All-Star game ends up in a tie

The Associated Press
Wednesday July 10, 2002

MILWAUKEE – In Bud’s backyard, even the All-Star Game ended with fans booing baseball.  

Despite Barry Bonds hitting a home run and Torii Hunter making a spectacular catch, the All-Star Game finished in a 7-7 tie after 11 innings Tuesday night when both teams ran out of pitchers.  

Commissioner Bud Selig, who lives in Milwaukee and formerly ran the Brewers, made the ultimate decision to call the game. It was the first tie in All-Star play since a game in 1961 was stopped by rain.  

“I want to take this opportunity to apologize to the fans,” Selig said. “Given the health of the players, I had no choice.  

“The decision was made because there were no players left, no pitchers left,” he said. ‘This is not the ending I had hoped for. I was in a no-win situation.”  

Amid worries about a players’ strike and steroids looming over the sport, baseball had hoped put the focus back on the field – at least for a day.  

No luck.  

“With everything going on in baseball, I’m sure the fans were very upset,” Hunter said.  

They sure were.  

There were loud chants of “Let them play!” and “Refund!” from the sellout crowd of 41,871 at Miller Park as Freddy Garcia struck out Benito Santiago with a runner on second base to end it.  

Once it finished, some fans in right field threw bottles.  

“They treated it like it was a meaningless game,” said David Cuscuna of Fort Lauderdale, Fla. “They’re telling the fans this game doesn’t matter. Not to mention the $175 face value for tickets. It sends a lot of bad messages.”  

An entertaining evening that began with Hank Aaron, Willie Mays and Cal Ripken taking part in festivities to honor the past wound up with fans even more angry and upset.  

“This is a very regrettable situation,” Selig said.  

There was no MVP picked. Bad timing, too, since the trophy was renamed this week to honor Ted Williams, the Hall of Famer who died Friday.  

It became apparent that a tie was possible after the top of the 11th when AL manager Joe Torre, NL manager Bob Brenly and umpire crew chief Gerry Davis went over to talk with Selig in the front row next to the first-base dugout.  

At one point during the five-minute discussion, Selig threw up his arms.  

After Luis Castillo flied out to start the bottom of the 11th, the stadium public-address announcer informed the crowd of the bad news, saying a tie would be declared if the NL didn’t score in the bottom half.  

Garcia and Vicente Padilla, who finished for the NL, each pitched two innings. All 60 players on the two rosters were used.  

The result left intact the AL’s five-game winning streak. The NL leads the overall series 40-31 – and now with two ties.  

“I feel bad for Bud,” Torre said. “Bob and I had talked. You can’t have it both ways. You can’t have all the people see all the players.”  

“If I was a fan, too, I would be disappointed,” said Arizona catcher Damian Miller, who doubled twice. “Obviously, you want to see someone win. You have to look out for the players and their health.”