Point-counterpoint: Baseball's All-Star game takes center stage next week. Any favorite memories? Towering blasts in the home run derby ... Cal Ripken Jr.'s home run ... Pete Rose bowling over Ray Fosse at home plate in the 1970 game ... Here are a couple takes.
Kruk, Big Unit provided All-Star entertainment
It was 1993 at Baltimore's new Camden Yards where a tale of two lefties with two mullets and two decidedly different minds met for one glorious All-Star game matchup.
Stone-faced Mariners ace Randy Johnson had mowed down the National League's best when he met burly, affable Phillies first baseman and fellow lefty John Kruk.
The first pitch was 98 mph and one foot over Kruk's head. He stepped out of the batter's box and acted as if he had a heart attack. The crowd roared at this comic relief.
With a big smile on his face but obviously scared for his life, Kruk stepped back into the box - barely. He looked as if he was closer to the NL dugout than home plate. He wildly flailed at two more pitches, missing by a combined 6 feet, but his theatrics drew a standing ovation as he waddled back to the dugout.
Midsummer Classic entertainment at its finest.
Hunter robbing Bonds of home run was great defensive moment
All-Star games are fun to watch because of the unparalleled collection of talent on one field.
Over the course of 162 games, these All-Stars will make dozens of unbelievable plays. But since they are all together for only one All-Star contest each year, the action tends to be rather ho-hum.
But in 2002, the stars aligned.
Barry Bonds was a half-season removed from hitting his single-season record 73 homers, and he would go on to hit 46 that year.
Although it wouldn't have counted in his official total, Bonds was certifiably robbed of a home run by Torii Hunter in the 2002 All-Star game. The blast was to right-center field, and Hunter stretched his arm over the wall and hauled the baseball back in.
I can still see Hunter running in from the outfield, with Bonds playfully attacking him near second base after the catch.
The act of snaring a ball over the outfield wall is rare. For Hunter to do it against the game's most feared home run hitter in an All-Star game with all eyes watching?
That's one moment that was truly memorable.