Last night, the 2023 MLB All-Star Game was held in Seattle, and it was a very notable one for one former North Carolina Tar Heels baseball player in particular. Starting on the mound for the National League was Zac Gallen, formerly of UNC and now an ace for the Arizona Diamondbacks.
Gallen got his All-Star Game started with two quick outs, opening things off by inducing a Marcus Semien flyout. Due up next was Shohei Ohtani, who is arguably the most celebrated player in the game today considering his two-way exploits. However, Gallen won this round, striking him out on six pitches.
After that, AL left fielder Randy Arozarena got him for a single. However, Gallen’s defense picked him up, with catcher Sean Murphy throwing out Arozarena as he tried to steal second.
That ended up being the end of Gallen’s day, with no pitcher throwing much more than that in today’s era of the All-Star Game. He officially threw one scoreless inning, allowing no runs on one hit, while recording one strikeout. It wasn’t nearly enough to get him in the All-Star Game MVP discussion or anything, but it was a very nice performance in his first ever appearance in the game.
The previous and only other Tar Heel to be a starting pitcher in the MLB All-Star Game was Matt Harvey back in 2013. That day, Harvey went one inning further, throwing two, but also had to escape a jam after putting the first two runners of the game on base.
As for the result of the game, the NL won 3-2.