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1980: The Last Time Dodger Stadium Hosted The All-Star Game

Bill Russell made his only All-Star start in 1980, in front of the home fans. (Getty Images)
Bill Russell made his only All-Star start in 1980, in front of the home fans. (Getty Images)

Hey Phoenix, congratulations on hosting your first All-Star Game. I'm sure it must have been tough waiting until your 14th season to host the midsummer classic. Meanwhile, the Dodgers are going on 31 years and counting since hosting their last All-Star Game, in 1980. All-Star sites are booked through 2013, so the Dodgers' wait will be at least 34 years until another All-Star Game will be at Dodger Stadium. Hey, maybe that can be a selling point to a prospective new owner!

Since the Dodgers last hosted the All-Star team, every franchise except the two Florida teams have hosted the midsummer classic (or will have, by 2013), though you can probably lump the Nationals in with the long wait club, since their last time hosting was when Montreal hosted in 1982. Six teams have hosted twice since the Dodgers last hosted, including five teams with new stadiums and the Angels, who remodeled theirs.

Anyway, back to the game itself. It was quite the event in Los Angeles, as the Dodgers got to show off their brand new state-of-the-art video screen in left field named DiamondVision. The game was held on July 8, and at the time the Dodgers were 46-34, tied with Houston, the same spot they would end up after 162 games as well. Four Dodgers were named to the National League starting lineup in 1980: Davey Lopes, Reggie Smith, Steve Garvey, and Bill Russell.

It was the third and final All-Star appearance for Russell, and his first start. For the first time ever, Steve Garvey didn't reach base in an All-Star Game, and the four Dodgers batters combined to go 0-for-7 at the plate. However, the Dodgers did have one man stand out.

Jerry Reuss was 9-2 at the break with a 1.96 ERA, and just 11 days earlier had no-hit the Giants in San Francisco, his fourth shutout of the season. Having started two days earlier, Reuss was third in the NL pecking order, behind the awesome J.R. Richard (10-4, 1.96 ERA at the break) and Reuss's teammate, Bob Welch (10-4, 2.71 ERA). Richard threw two scoreless innings, and so did Welch, but then Welch pitched a third inning and allowed two runs. Reuss pitched the sixth inning, and struck out all three men he faced: Darrell Porter, Buddy Bell, and Tommy John.

The NL rallied for two runs in the bottom of the sixth inning, turning a 2-1 deficit into a 3-2 lead. The NL went on to win the game 4-2, giving Reuss the victory. Five different Dodgers have picked up a win in an All-Star Game, but Reuss remains the last one to do so, 31 years ago.