Work up in the zone. If you are facing off against Mike Trout, for goodness sake throw the ball up in the strike zone. He will crush anything down or in the middle of the zone, no matter where it is.
As a pitcher you somehow have to find a way to buck the conventional wisdom of how you usually pitch and not work down in the zone. If you don’t, Trout will probably find a way to make you pay.
Adam Wainwright of the St. Louis Cardinals learned that lesson in the bottom of the 1st inning of Tuesday night’s All-Star game. With a fastball that was located fairly well on the outer half of the plate, Wainwright saw his delivery get absolutely rocked off the right field wall for an RBI triple.
Wainwright and the rest of the National League knew that they had it tough once they AL lineup got rolling. Anytime you have to face Trout, Robinson Cano, and then Miguel Cabrera, you know things are going to get tough. Wainwright did himself no favors, then, when he allowed Jeter to lead things off with a double after his standing ovation.
Such it was that the AL was able to charge out to a fast start in a game that many presumed would be short on offense.
Stay tuned to FanSided for all your MLB All-Star game coverage and highlights.