A quartet of Braves All-Stars, including three first-timers, played for the National League in Tuesday’s midsummer classic in Washington. The American League prevailed, 8-6, in a 10-inning affair that included a record 10 home runs.
Braves first baseman Freddie Freeman was the league’s leading vote-getter and playing in his third All-Star game. He started and hit fourth in the order.
Freeman flew out to left on the third pitch from Boston’s Chris Sale in his first at-bat. He grounded out to second against Tampa Bay’s Blake Snell in his next.
“It was a blast,” Freeman said. “Being around the best players in the world, we tried to put on a show. ... We had a good time. Coming to All-Star games is definitely special. This is my third one, it feels like the first one. So it’s always fun to come back and hopefully there’s some more in my future.”
Nick Markakis, playing in the first All-Star game in his 13-year career, started in right field and hit seventh. His first at-bat came with former teammate Matt Kemp standing at second, and Markakis flew out to left. He drew a walk in his next at-bat, also against Snell.
“That was a cool experience,” Markakis said. “We’re the best baseball players in the world, and I try to take advantage of that. ... It’s been a fun couple of days. It’s something I’ll never forget.”
Markakis plans to relax at the pool with his three boys Wednesday, setting baseball aside and enjoying a brief break before the games resume Friday.
Mike Foltynewicz was the third pitcher for the NL, following Max Scherzer and Jacob deGrom. He was the first not to allow a run.
Foltynewicz faced Cleveland’s Jose Ramirez to open the fourth. He fired in a 98-mph fastball for a strike, and set down Ramirez on three pitches. His velocity stayed in the upper-90s.
“I just wanted to throw strikes,” Foltynewicz said. “Just wanted to have a full inning. ... That was too fun. I’m still kind of speechless.”
After issuing a five-pitch walk to New York slugger Aaron Judge, he got Baltimore’s Manny Machado to pop up to third, and induced a fly out to center from the White Sox’s Jose Abreu to end the inning.
In the All-Star game, facing a gauntlet of star hitters is to be expected, but Foltynewicz was still served a tougher slate.
“Me and (Jacob) deGrom were talking, ‘Who you think we’re going to line up against when we get in?’ ” Foltynewicz said. “In the middle of the order, bottom of the order is pretty good too. No break.”
Ozzie Albies entered at second in the sixth inning. He grounded out in the seventh against former Brave and current Astro Charlie Morton. Scooter Gennett pinch-hit for him in the ninth and launched a two-run game-tying homer.
Albies would’ve liked to get another at-bat, but he understood everyone needs a swing.
“It was amazing,” Albies said. “It was exciting and hopefully I keep coming to these All-Star games. Amazing feeling, and hopefully more are on the way.”
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