MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Clayton Kershaw did his part with a perfect inning. Jonathan Lucroy pitched in two RBI doubles. Craig Kimbrel struck out the side in the seventh.
The National League, for all that pitching prowess, lost a second straight All-Star game. That means the American League will again have the home-field advantage again when the World Series arrives in three months.
With an RBI triple by MVP Mike Trout and a two-run home run by Miguel Cabrera in the first inning against Adam Wainwright, the AL topped the NL 5-3 on Tuesday night.
Wainwright, the St. Louis ace, was picked to start the game by his manager, Mike Matheny. Had the boss been anyone else, Kershaw likely would have had the honor. The Dodgers stalwart with the 1.78 ERA and 126 strikeouts in 14 starts took over for the second inning and kept the NL in it after Lucroy cut the lead to 3-2 in the bottom of the first with the first of his big hits.
The Milwaukee catcher, inserted in the starting lineup for the injured Yadier Molina, hit another run-scoring double in the fourth to tie the game at 3. But Cardinals reliever Pat Neshek, pitching in the place he grew up, gave up two runs in the fifth to let the AL pull ahead for good.
Brewers closer Francisco Rodriguez and Kimbrel, Atlanta's rock at the back of the bullpen, turned in hitless innings to keep the NL close. But the AL's late-game relievers were every bit as stingy.
So for All-Stars from teams like the Braves, Brewers, Cardinals and Dodgers, currently four of the top five teams in the league, they are stuck with the fact that they will have to play a Game 7 on the road should they make it all the way through the postseason and into a decisive game for the title.
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