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Game Thread: Cristian Guzman and The National League Against The Futuristic American League With Their Revolutionary DH- 2008 MLB All-Star Game Live From New York's Yankee Stadium.

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Cristian Guzman's first All-Star game was Cal Ripken's last. On July 10, 2001, in Seattle, Washington's SAFECO Field, the Baltimore Orioles' Hall of Fame shortstop started at short before stepping over to third for then-Rangers' shortstop Alex Rodriguez, who'd been voted in as the starter, and whose idea it was for Ripken to begin the game in the position he manned expertly for most of twenty-one Major League seasons with the O's. After Ripken for an inning, A-Rod and then Derek Jeter at short for the American League, Minnesota shortstop Cristian Guzman got his shot as a pinch hitter in the bottom of the seventh with Yankees' catcher Jorge Posada on third, two outs and Cards' righty Matt Morris on the mound for the trailing National League...Guzman struck out, and then played the top of the eighth and ninth innings in the field in the AL's 4-1 win...(Ripken, you'll remember, homered in his final All-Star at bat, taking the first pitch of the third inning from Dodgers' pitcher Chan Ho Park for a ride...)

Guzman might get some time in the field tonight, as one of only three shortstops on the NL's roster...What to expect? What do you think? One of the 2 triples? 5 HR's? or 26 doubles Guzman's connected on out of the 126 hits he has in 405 '08 AB's? Or, more likely...another one of the 93 slap singles Guzman's collected so far this season on his way to leading the National League in hits at the Break...Guzman's "1st Half" #'s - (.315 AVG, 26 doubles, 2 triples, 5 HR's, 30 RBI's and 3 steals, with just 35 K's in 94 games.)

Guzman's #'s Against the AL's All-Star Pitchers...

Guzman...

vs. Justin Duchsherer (Oak) - 2 for 4, .500 AVG, 1 HR, 2 RBI's.

vs. Roy Hallyday (Tor) - 5 for 18, .278 AVG, 1 2B, 1 3B, 2 RBI's.

vs. Cliff Lee (Cle) - 6 for 14, .429 AVG.

Scott Kazmir (Tam) - No AB's.

vs. Joe Nathan (Min) - 0 for 1, .000 AVG.

Jonathan Papelbon (Bos) - No AB's.

vs. Mariano Rivera - (NYY) - 1 for 5, .200 AVG.

vs. Francisco Rodriguez - (LAA) - 1 for 2, .500 AVG.

George Sherrill - (Bal) - No AB's.

The 2008 MLB All-Star Game gets underway at some time after the festivities get underway around 8:00 pm EST out of Yankee Stadium. This Time It Counts! This Time There Are Enough Players! One more time in Old/New Yankees Stadium. NL Ben Sheets (Mil) vs AL Cliff Lee (Cle) to start the night. Although the AL hasn't lost an All-Star Game since 1996, the National League still leads the All-Time series (41-35) with 2 ties...? Everyone remembers the most recent All-Star tie? Does anyone know when the other All-Star Game tie was? (ed. note- "Answer in the Comments section.")

Nationals News Update...

"Zimmerman Watch" - Federal Baseball's 24-Hour, 22 Hou...12 Hour... Intermittent Dodgy Coverage of the BREAKING NEWS! And ACTION!!......

The Class-A Potomac Nationals, or P-Nats, saw the debut of their new 23-year old third baseman tonight, one Ryan Zimmerman, who was the P-Nats' DH against Houston Astros' Class A affiliate, the Salem(Va.) Avalanche. Zimmerman doubled twice, going 2 for 5 with a run scored in an 8-6 P-Nats' loss.

While Washington's '05 1st Round Draft pick's rehab stint was getting underway, the Nationals' top pick in '07, lefty starter Ross Detwiler was making his 18th start for the P-Nats, coming off 6.0 shutout innings in his previous outing, and tonight allowing 9 hits and 4 runs in 6.1 innings and taking the loss to the Avalanche, which dropped Detwiler's record to (5-5), with 81.1 innings pitched, over which he's given up 94 hits, 49 ER's, 6 HR's and 41 walks with 77 K's collected.

According to MLB.com's Bill Ladson's article entitled, "Zimmerman back in action in Minors", the plan is for:

"Zimmerman (to) wrap up his stint with Potomac tomorrow in Salem, and then head to Triple-A Columbus on Thursday."

Just As Zimmerman Starts On The Comeback Trail...

Wily Mo Pena's headed for surgery, according to Washington Times' writer Mark Zuckerman's article entitled, "Sugery might put Pena out for season", in which Mr. Zuckerman reports that:

"An enhanced MRI taken Monday on Pena's shoulder revealed a small tear and impingement in his rotator cuff and fraying in his labrum, according to team orthopedist Ben Shaffer..."

In 64 games and 195 at bats this season, WMP is batting .205 with 6 doubles, 2 HR's and 10 RBI's. So much for seeing what WMP can do with 500 AB's? Maybe next season...

No word in this or any other article I've seen about who'll replace Pena on the DC roster, but there probably won't be until Thursday or Friday, when the '08 campaign gets back underway with the Nationals in Atlanta for a three-game weekend set...

Who's watching the All-Star Game? What will Guzman do?...POLL!!!