Baseball's newest contribution to the romance of American sports, the All-Star Game, made its debut on July 6, 1933, at Chicago's Comiskey Park. It was initiated at the insistence of Arch Ward, a sports editor for the Chicago Tribune, to coincide with the celebration of the city's "Century of Progress" Exposition. By the 1930's, baseball had already established itself as America's favorite pastime and the national exposition provided the perfect stage to introduce baseball's best to the rest of the country. Many did not believe that a contest of this magnitude could possibly live up to the fan's expectations, especially for those who lived in the far western states and had never been to a major league baseball game.
The novel idea of a single game made up of the most exciting assemblage of ball-playing talent ever brought together on the diamond at one time, seemed too good to be true. In 1933 and 1934, All-Star teams were selected by the managers and the fans. The National League's manager John McGraw and American League's Connie Mack were chosen to lead a line-up of big hitters including Lou Gehrig, Jimmie Foxx, Al Simmons and the one and only Babe Ruth. "We wanted to see the Babe," said Bill Hallahan, the National League starter. "Sure, he was old and had a big waistline, but that didn't make any difference. We were on the same field as Babe Ruth."
With fellow All-Star, Charlie Gehringer on first in the bottom of the third, The Babe drove one into the right-field stands, the first homer in All-Star history. The crowd, according to one account, "roared in acclamation" and the first All-Star Game, won by the American League on the strength of Ruth's homer, was a resounding success.
"We wanted to see the Babe. Sure, he was old and had a big waistline, but that didn't make any difference. We were on the same field as Babe Ruth." - Wild Bill Hallahan
1933 All-Star Game Official Program
The 1933 Midsummer Classic | 1934 ASG →
1933 National League All-Star Squad
1933 American League All-Star Squad