In an All-Star Game that was more of a tribute to Derek Jeter than anything else, the Oakland A's managed to show up pretty well themselves. Six A's got into the game, there were two different all-Oakland batteries (Scott Kazmir and Sean Doolittle both pitched to Derek Norris), multiple instances of four different A's on the field at once, and while none took control of the game, all played relatively well.
Perhaps most importantly, the American League's elite can rest easy knowing that if they reach the World Series, Games 1, 2, 6, and 7 will be played in their home ballpark. Since A's pitchers combined for four outs, Mike Trout and Miguel Cabrera contributed key extra-base hits, Derek Norris caught several innings and scored a run, that actually kind of makes sense. A little bit.
Boston manager John Farrell was slow to use Scott Kazmir out of the bullpen after Felix Hernadnez threw one scoreless inning. Kazmir didn't come in until the 6th inning, and Farrell pulled him in favor of his own close, Koji Uehara, to get the third out with a runner in scoring position.
Farrell later did the same thing with Sean Doolittle, pulling him out of the 8th inning with an out to go, allowing Fernando Rodney to pitch to one batter. It was the best of both worlds — neither A's pitcher threw more than 13 pitches, but still participated and pitched well.
The A's couldn't do much from the batter's box, though — Derek Norris' single through the left side was the only hit of the night in seven combined at-bats between him, Yoenis Cespedes, Brandon Moss, and Josh Donaldson.
Donaldson made a few nice plays at third base, but it was Cespedes who blew his chance at a nationally televised web gem. In the 6th inning, Cespedes got to a base hit from Aramis Ramirez in plenty of time to throw Ramirez out at second base, but airmailed the throw well over Jose Altuve's head. And while it's easy to throw a ball way over Altuve's head, not even a pair of Nate Freiman's at second base could have corralled this one.
But Doolittle induced a groundout from Dee Gordon, and Uehara struck out Devin Mesoraco, ending the inning and keeping Cespedes' errant throw inconsequential.
The important thing is this: Nobody got hurt, the A's represented themselves well, and all pitchers should be fresh and available for the upcoming weekend series against Baltimore. The A's take on the Orioles at 7:05pm on Friday, in what will be Manny Machado's first appearance in Oakland since he embarrassed himself by singlehandedly trying to fight everybody on the A's. Until then, enjoy the break — there won't be another until October. Hopefully November.