Fans in the crowd at Hammons Field in Springfield, Mo. on Wednesday may have had flashbacks to the 2002 Major League All-Star Game that ended in a tie. Nine innings weren’t enough to settle the Texas League All-Star Game. Steven Murphy’s (Rangers) home run in the 10th inning broke a 3-3 tie and propelled the South to victory.
Up until the 10th, the crowd of 8,459 was treated to a low-scoring affair between the North and South squads. North starter Jess Todd (Cardinals) worked around a lead-off double in the first to throw two scoreless innings. Todd, the Cardinals second round pick in 2007, struck out five in his brief appearance.
Jon Jay’s (Cardinals) fourth inning double led to the North’s first run of the game. Jay went 2-for-3 on the night and also drew a walk. The South would answer quickly in the top of the fifth with a pair of runs to take the lead. Tommy Everidge (A’s) drove in the first run for the South, part of his 3-for-5 evening. Everidge would score later in the inning, one of his two runs scored in the game.
After tying the game in the seventh, the North went ahead in the eighth with a Tony Blanco (Rockies) home run. Blanco has twelve home runs in regular season play for the Tulsa Drillers.
After Casey Weathers’ (Tulsa) scoreless eighth inning, the North was three outs away from a win. Noel Salas (Cardinals), who’s recorded 12 saves for Springfield, was sent out to secure the victory. Salas allowed a leadoff double to Jon Zeringue (A’s) to begin the ninth. The hit was Zeringue’s second double of the game and his fourth hit of the night. An Everidge single moved Zeringue to third. After Elvis Andrus struck out for the second out, Everidge attempted to steal second. A wayward throw from North catcher Brandon Yarbrough ended up in the outfield, allowing Zeringue to score the tying run.
After Murphy’s home run broke the tie, the South tacked on three more insurance runs, all with two outs. Luke Gregerson (Cardinals) was on the mound for the North in the 10th and took the loss, while former Duke Blue Devil Greg Burke (Padres) picked up the win, pitching a scoreless ninth and 10th innings for the South.