Jeter, Trout continue AL dominance
MINNEAPOLIS – Derek Jeter soaked in the adulation from fans and players during one more night on baseball’s national stage, set the tone for the American League with a pregame speech and then delivered two final All-Star hits.
Mike Trout, perhaps the top candidate to succeed the 40-year-old Yankees captain as the face of the game, seemed ready to assume the role with a tiebreaking triple and later a go-ahead double that earned the 22-year-old MVP honors.
On a summer evening filled with reminders of generational change, the AL kept up nearly two decades of dominance by beating the National League 5-3 Tuesday for its 13th win in 17 years.
“I think let Mike be Mike. I don’t think people have to necessarily appoint someone to a particular position,” Jeter said. “He’s got a bright future ahead of him. I don’t know how much better he can get, but if he consistently does what he’s doing, then he will be here for a long time.”
Miguel Cabrera hit a two-run homer to help give the AL champion home-field advantage for the World Series.
No matter what else happened, from the start it seemed destined to be another special event for Jeter.
He made a diving stop on Andrew McCutchen’s grounder to shortstop leading off the game and nearly threw him out at first, then received a 63-second standing ovation when he walked to the plate before his opposite-field double to right leading off the bottom half. He was given another rousing cheer before his single to right starting the third and 2 1/2 minutes more applause after AL manager John Farrell sent Alexei Ramirez to shortstop to replace him at the start of the fourth.
Jeter repeatedly waved to the crowd, exchanged handshakes and hugs with just about every person in the AL dugout and then came back onto the field for a curtain call.
All-star TV ratings up
Derek Jeter’s final All-Star appearance has helped boost television ratings for the game.
The American League’s 5-3 win in Minneapolis averaged more than 11.3 million viewers on Fox, up from 11 million for last year’s game at the Mets’ Citi Field in New York. The rating was up 9 percent for the first full half-hour, when the retiring Yankees shortstop first stepped to the plate.
The network said the 7.0 fast national rating was the highest since 2010. The 2012 edition set a record low with a 6.8.