The most excited Texas Rangers All-Star representative Tuesday night immediately following the American League’s 4-3 win was left-hander Mike Minor, who had a front-row seat the whole game.
The seventh inning got him going, as he watched Rangers teammate Joey Gallo swat a home run on the first pitch of his first career All-Star at-bat. The blast made the score 4-1 and was the different in the game.
Minor was thinking MVP, as were a lot of his AL teammates.
“Joey was trying to play it cool, like he’d been there before,” Minor said Thursday. “I think he was keeping it in.”
Gallo was playing it cool again Monday. Asked directly if he thought he should have been selected MVP over winner Shane Bieber of the hometown Cleveland Indians, Gallo said that it was just cool being at the All-Star Game.
He thought it was a three-man race, along with Houston Astros outfielder Michael Brantley, for the Chevrolet pickup truck that went to the winner.
“Nah, I thought Bieber did a great job, honestly,” Gallo said. “Everybody kept telling me, ‘Which truck are you going to pick? Which truck are you going pick?’” Gallo said. “I’m like, ‘I don’t know. I didn’t even get it yet. Let’s see if they give it to me.’
“That’s what made me think I was going to get it more, but I knew it wasn’t a given that I was going to get it. Like I said, I’m happy for him. He’s a great guy.”
Shortstop Elvis Andrus, watching the game from home, wasn’t nearly as restrained.
“I think he should have been MVP for sure,” Andrus said. “No doubt.”
For the record, Gallo said he would have selected the white and red pickup. The experience of being on the team, an accomplishment he said he never thought would happen, was enough of a reward.
He gave his teammates a thrill, though.
“I was pumped up because I thought he had a chance,” Minor said. “No one really did anything that stood out in that game. But Joey stepped in there, one pitch, one swing.”