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MLB All-Star Game 2012: National League Blows Out American League For 3rd Straight Win

The National League cruised to their third straight All-Star Game victory by defeating the American League 8-0 at Kauffman Stadium. The NL roughed up AL starter Justin Verlander in the top of the first inning, putting five runs on the board. The reigning AL Cy Young and MVP was wild and issued back-to-back walks to Carlos Beltran and Buster Posey to load the bases. Posey's teammate, Pablo Sandoval, cleared the bases with a triple off the right field wall the pushed the lead to 4-0.

Another Giant put the game out of reach in the top of the fourth, with Melky Cabrera taking Matt Harrison over the left field wall into the bullpen to make it 8-0. The two-run shot was his second hit of the night and sealed up the MVP award for Cabrera.

The eight-run lead allowed Tony La Russa to keep his pitching plan in tact, with the retired manager using Gio Gonzalez and Stephen Strasburg in the third and fourth innings. Both Nationals starters held the shutout, with Strasburg getting some help on a running catch by Ryan Braun in left field. Bryce Harper had a strikeout and a walk in his first All-Star Game. After the walk, the sensational rookie instantly made some noise when he successfully tagged up from first base on a deep fly ball to left field. But Harper's first midsummer classic may be best remembered for the amusing play when he lost the ball in the lights. Like the rest of the National League, it was a good night for Washington's representatives.

For more on the Washington Nationals and their week at the All-Star Game, make sure to visit Federal Baseball. Still not enough baseball for you? Head over to Baseball Nation for all the latest news from all 30 MLB teams and the MLB All-Star Game.