AL does it the old-fashioned way to beat NL

BY foxsports • July 15, 2009

This was the National League's year. It had to be. The Cardinals, Phillies and friends had not celebrated an All-Star victory since 1996, and this time they had the sluggers and stoppers to do it.

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Albert Pujols. Ryan Howard. Tim Lincecum. Chad Billingsley. I liked the senior circuit's young talent, and I believed wholeheartedly that the NL was going to win.

Well, I was wrong.

The American League's unbeaten streak stands at 12-0-1, after a riveting-if-not-thrill-a-minute 4-3 victory at Busch Stadium. The AL won interleague play (again) and the All-Star Game (again) and on Tuesday took new ownership of something that was once well outside its domain — the pitching-and-defense way.

Carl Crawford earned MVP honors because of his acrobatic, enjoy-it-on-TiVo catch of Brad Hawpe's would-be home run to left. The AL pitching staff set down 18 consecutive batters, a run that started during President Obama's second-inning visit to the FOX television booth and ended with two outs in the eighth. The winning run (Curtis Granderson) scored on an Adam Jones sacrifice fly.

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