CLEVELAND-The streets of downtown Cleveland were packed Tuesday afternoon as Major League Baseball’s best players made their way though the streets of Cleveland and into Progressive Field.
“It’s the same as every day,” said Indians manager Terry Francona. “Usually I’m just trying to dodge people; today I was waving, so it was kind of fun.”
As players arrived at the ballpark they walked up the red carpet and got ready for their moment in the spotlight.
“We didn’t have a Red Carpet,” said former Indians All-Star Jim Thome. “We didn’t have a Home Run Derby; everything I think has grown in baseball so well.”
Francisco Lindor is making his fourth All-Star appearance; he was sporting his million-dollar smile.
“I’ve heard a couple of guys saying this (All-Star Week) is their favorite so far,” said the Indians shortstop.
Indians first baseman Carlos Santana is starting at first base for the American League and batting fourth in his home ballpark.
“Enjoy it with my fans, my teammates, my sweet home,” said Santana.
Indians closer Brad Hand is making his third all-star appearance. He loves the party the city is throwing for MLB.
“Cleveland is a big time sports city, so they love their sports teams so to be able to have the game here and we have four players in the game so to be able to have us four out there and go play in front of our home fans in an All-Star game is a pretty cool experience,” said Hand.
It’s been a surreal few days for Shane Bieber who is still coming to terms that he will be representing the Indians in the Mid-Summer Classic.
“Pretty incredible,” said Bieber. “I was nice and familiar with the locker room and I went to my same old locker with a different name plate, saw some different names around there so really honored to be here and representing the city of Cleveland.”
Enjoy it Cleveland, you rock and the world is taking notice.