All-star game belongs in baseball-crazed Minnesota

Brian Dozier of the Minnesota Twins is congratulated by teammates after scoring on an RBI double...

Brian Dozier of the Minnesota Twins is congratulated by teammates after scoring on an RBI double off the bat of Kendrys Morales in the first inning against the Seattle Mariners at Safeco Field on July 9, 2014 in Seattle, Washington. (Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images/AFP)

BOB ELLIOTT, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 12:13 AM ET

It was crunch time, the nervy white-kunckle ninth inning before the ninth.

You could have used any of those cliches and they would have fit.

But why would you?

The game between the Seattle Mariners (six games under .500, four games back in the wild-card race) and the Minnesota Twins (a .500 team) on a Sunday afternoon Sept. 15, 1996 at the MetroDome in Minneapolis was certainly not the ESPN Sunday Game of the Week.

Paul Molitor, sitting on 2,998 career hits, had grounded out to end the third. Now, he might get only two more at-bats in the final game of a 10-game homestand to reach 3,000.

Jim Caple, the talented Minnesota scribe now at ESPN.com, asked me: “Are you going to Kansas City for Monday’s game?”

Nope. Neither his paper nor mine would pay for the last-minute flight.

“What if I drive and we split the gas?” asked Caple.

Molitor grounded out to end the sixth and bounced out for the second out of the ninth.


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