Cincinnati Reds All-Star Game History: 1988

terry steinbach 1988With the Cincinnati Reds hosting the Major League All-Star Game this summer on July 14, it will be the fifth time the history of the organization the best players will converge near the Ohio River.

The mid-summer classic was in Cincinnati for the first time in 1938. Crosley Field was also the site for the second contest in 1953.

In 1970, the annual affair was played in Riverfront Stadium a few weeks after it opened.

The last time the Reds entertained the best of the game was in 1988.

This year, will be the first time at Great American Ballpark.

Here is a look at the All-Star Game from July 12, 1988:

The fact the Oakland catcher Terry Steinbach was batting .217 heading into the All-Star Game didn’t matter as he was selected by the fans to start for the American League in the annual contest.

Steinbach made the most of the first of his three career all-star appearances as he was named the game‘s Most Valuable Player in a 2-1 AL win at Riverfront Stadium. It was the first victory by the AL in four tries in Cincinnati. The National League had won in 1938, 1953 and 1970.

In the third inning of the 1988 event, Steinbach blasted a solo homer off NL starter and loser Dwight Gooden of the New York Mets.

The NL tied the game in the top of the fourth frame as Vince Coleman of the St. Louis Cardinals scored on a wild pitch by Kansas City hurler Mark Gubicza.

Steinbach answered the call again with a sacrifice fly in the bottom of the fourth to give
the AL what turned out to be the final run of the affair.

Frank Viola of the Minnesota Twins was the winning pitcher for the AL, while Steinbach’s teammate in Oakland, Dennis Eckersley, picked up the save.

In his 14-year career, Steinbach played for the A’s from 1986-1996. He completed his time in the big leagues in Minnesota from 1997-1999. He ended the 1988 season with nine homers and 51 RBI with a .265 batting average.

During his best season, Steinbach hit 35 home runs with 100 RBI in 1996 when he had a .272 batting average.

Barry Larkin, Danny Jackson and Chris Sabo were the three representatives for the Cincinnati Reds.

A 12-time all-star, Larkin was playing in his initial contest on his way to being inducted into the National Baseball Hall of Fame in 2012. After helping the Reds win the 1990 World Series, he was named the NL MVP in 1995. He earned eight Silver Sluggers and three Gold Gloves in his 19-year career.

In 1988, Jackson was the first Reds pitcher to win 20 games since the last time they hosted the All-Star Game in 1970. Jackson was 23-8 with a 2.73 as he was second in the NL Cy Young race behind Orel Hershiser of the Los Angeles Dodgers. Jim Merritt was 20-12 in 1970 for the Reds. A 15-year veteran, Jackson was with Cincinnati from 1988-1990. He was part of his first World Series title in 1985 with the Kansas City Royals.

After stealing a base in the 1988 All-Star Game, Sabo would eventually become the NL Rookie of the Year. He had 11 homers with 44 RBI and a .271 batting average to go with 46 stolen bases. A member of the 1990 world champs, he was a three-time all-star in his nine-year career that also included brief stints with the Baltimore Orioles, Chicago White Sox and St. Louis Cardinals.


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