Mays’ pinch-hit homer leads National League to victory in 1956 All-Star Game
At the 23rd edition of the Mid-Summer Classic on July 10, 1956, the New York Giants’ slugger stepped into the box as a pinch hitter in the top of the fourth with his team leading 1-0.
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And win they did, as the National League captured its second consecutive victory and sixth in the last seven contests, led by Mays’ game-defining homer.
“You can’t win when your pitchers don’t stop the other fellows,” Stengel said.
Mays’ 1956 performance came early in his run of dominance in midsummer classics. He went on to play in 24 All-Star Games in his career, including a stretch of 23 consecutive selections from 1954-1972. He batted .307 in those 24 games with three home runs and nine RBI.
“They invented the All-Star Game for Willie Mays,” Williams once said.
Janey Murray was the digital content specialist at the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum