Joey Gallo delivered in his first career All-Star appearance as the Texas Rangers’ slugger hit a solo shot that proved the difference for the American League.
He was the most valuable player on the winning team. But he wasn’t the MVP. That “honor” went to hometown pitcher, Shane Bieber, who struck out three hitters in his lone inning of work. We’re not bitter though because Texas Rangers’ slugger, Joey Gallo, became the most efficient hitter in the history of the All-Star Game (not fact-checked) when he hit a solo home run on the only pitch he saw at the Midsummer Classic.
Gallo, who has become one of the most feared hitters in the league, was chosen as a reserve for the 2019 All-Star Game after missing out on a starting spot during the fan vote. Gallo entered defensively in the top of the 7th inning taking over left field for the American League. His lone at-bat came in the bottom half of the 7th with nobody on and 2 outs. Dave Roberts (Dodgers) and manager of the NL squad opted to bring in Giants lefty reliever Will Smith to face Gallo. Smith grooved a first-pitch 94 mph fastball to Joey that Gallo promptly returned to the people of right field on a 397-foot solo shot.
Gallo’s homer was the hardest hit in the All-Star Game since 2015 at 111.5 mph and extended the AL lead to 4-1 in the 7th. After a couple of runs given up by Indians reliever Brad Hand, the score sat 4-3 in favor of the American League and ended that way giving Joey Gallo the game-winning homer.
This surely won’t be the last All-Star appearance for Joey Gallo, who at 25 years old, has morphed into a great all-around player. This season, he has 20 homers and an OPS of 1.060 which is the 2nd best in the AL for players with at least 207 at-bats, trailing only Mike Trout. He’s also carved out a role for himself as a defensively-sound outfielder and has emerged as a cornerstone of the Rangers’ franchise.