Vladimir Guerrero Jr. made a historic Midsummer Classic debut on Tuesday night in Denver, Colorado. Using the beautiful and bey homerun-friendly confines of Coors Field, the 22-year old Toronto Blue Jays slugger became the youngest All-Star MVP in MLB history as the American League defeated the National League 5-2 in front of a sellout amidst the pristine Rocky Mountains.
22 years old and already a superstar.
— MLB (@MLB) July 14, 2021
Vlad Jr. is also the first Blue Jays player to be named ASG MVP. As a young lad at All-Star Games, there are snapshots of him with his dad Vlad a 2018 Baseball Hall of Fame inductee. His dad was a throwback to a different era when players didn’t use batting gloves, and pine tar was considered a badge of honor. Sr. was never about style points, but always about power which led to mass production on the diamond.
“I honestly just wanna thank my dad, this is for you.” Jr. stated in his MVP acceptance speech.
Every Vladimir Guerrero Jr. homer is absolutely majestic.pic.twitter.com/De9qbYkoDw
— Baseball America (@BaseballAmerica) July 14, 2021
Jr. may not be a throwback to that era, but he does possess power and is giving the Blue Jays plenty of production. Since the beginning of the season, the Blue Jays have been displaced; the team hasn’t been allowed to play a single in Toronto.
Instead, they’ve played all their home games in Tampa after spending the remainder of the 2020 season in the MLB Bubble. The team hasn’t played at their home field, Rogers Centre, since September 2019.
This is incredible.
Vladimir Guerrero Jr.’s All-Star Game glove is wrapped with the iconic photo of him and his Dad.
— Boardroom (@boardroom) July 13, 2021
His solo 468-foot moonshot made him the second-youngest at 22 to ever homer in the Midsummer Classic. Only Johnny Bench was younger when he homered in an ASG.
While his Hall of Fame dad, Vlad Sr., never took home All-Star Game MVP honors, he did go yard in the 2006 game. They made the Guerreros their father-son combo to homer in the All-Star Game, joining Bobby and Barry Bonds and Ken Griffey Sr and Jr.
At the rate Vlad Jr. is going, he may not be done picking up hardware this season; heck, it may not be the only MVP trophy he wins.
Vladimir Guerrero Jr. tells the first baseman he’s going to score from first on a double and then he does pic.twitter.com/quSmoqNcli
— Jomboy Media (@JomboyMedia) July 7, 2021
He currently leads all of MLB in RBIs with (73), batting average (.332), and OPS (1.089). He’s also tied for second in homers with San Diego Padres superstar shortstop Fernando Tatis Jr. (28). And they both trail two-way superstar Shohei “Sho-Time” Ohtani and his (33) dingers.
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the 2020 game in Los Angeles was canceled. At the same time, they were having the 2021 game moved out of Atlanta, Georgia to Denver, Colorado, voter restrictions and laws to support systemic racism further, seeing the game played and fan interaction again, it just felt right.
This angle of the Vladimir Guerrero Jr. blast👌👌 pic.twitter.com/ngPxr6YnZ1
— FOX Sports (@FOXSports) July 14, 2021
Seeing Billye Aaron, the widow of the late great Hall of Famer Henry “Hank” Aaron, as they honored the 25-time All-Star in 25 seasons of play was just icing-on-the-cake.
For me, as an avid baseball fan and analyst, I needed this as I love the sport, and no, I don’t just watch in October.
There was a record 40 first-time All-Stars.
It’s safe to say, “Baseball Is Back.”