1950 All-Star Game
As the All-Star game entered its third decade, the National League was tired of being baseball's perennial loser. Trailing 12-4 in All-Star Games and losing the three previous World Series, the National League did not have the fans or American League players respect anymore.
Inspired by their poor showing in the previous decades, the National League resolved to make this year different. The 1950 All-Star Game turned out to be the first to go into extra innings, featured two dramatic home runs and produced some of the finest All-Star pitching ever. As usual, the American League was leading (3-2) in the top of the ninth. Then, Ralph Kiner led off with a long home run that tied the score and set the stage for a three-inning pitchers' duel.
Larry Jansen pitched for the National League into the eleventh inning while giving up one hit in five innings. Allie Reynolds matched him, taking the American League into the twelfth and giving up one hit over three innings. Pitcher Ted Gray took over for the American League in the thirteenth and maintained the status quo. In the fourteenth, however, the National League fired another leadoff rocket off the bat of Red Schoendienst. He was an unlikely hero as he had sat for ten innings while Jackie Robinson played second. Entering the game defensively in the eleventh, Schoendienst stepped up in the fourteenth and homered into the left-field stands. Even more disheartening was the American League loss of Ted Williams. While making a running catch of a Kiner drive in the first inning, he ran into the wall and broke his elbow. He stayed in the game, visibly injured, and went one-for-four. Later he underwent surgery and didn't play again until September 15. The National League had gone the distance and made a statement. Finally, they had established a momentum that would last for several years.