Opened: 1912 (with Detroit's Tiger Stadium, which closes after this season, the oldest park in the league)
Capacity: 33,871 (smallest in major leagues)
Left: 310 ft
Left-center: 379 ft
Center: 390 ft
Deep center: 420 ft
Deep right: 380 ft
Right field line: 302 ft
Left field wall: 37 ft (total height with screen is 60 feet)
Center field wall: 17 ft
Bullpen fences: 5 ft
Right field fence: 3-5 ft
The Green Monster.
History: The Monster was constructed in 1912, as a 25-foot high wood wall in left field that posed a challenge to hitters in the "dead ball" era. It also kept balls from landing on Lansdowne Street, which is only 325 feet from home plate. There was also a 10-foot sloping embankment in front of the wall in left. That wall burned with the rest of the park in 1934. The second wall was 37 feet high and made of tin over railroad ties. The current wall was installed in 1976 and is made of hard plastic. In 1936, a 23-foot screen was added to protect windows on other side. In 1947, advertisements were painted over with green paint, giving the wall its famous nickname. In Morse code down the side of the scoreboard are the initials of former owners Thomas A. Yawkey and Jean R. Yawkey.
First game was April 20, 1912, between Red Sox and New York Highlanders. Boston wins, 7-6, in 11 innings, but game story is pushed off front page of Boston papers when Titanic sinks.
The first pro football team to play there was the Boston Redskins, who played there for four years before moving to Washington in 1937.
Red Sox owner John I. Taylor named the field Fenway Park because it was in the Fenway section of Boston.
Other Fenway Landmarks.
Pesky's Pole: The rightfield foul pole is called "Pesky's Pole," after former Red Sox shortstop Johnny Pesky. It was named by pitcher-turned-broadcaster Mel Parnell in the 1960s.
Section 42, Row 37, Seat 21: This seat in the bleachers is painted red instead of the customary green. It is where the longest home run, hit by Ted Williams, ever hit in Fenway Park landed (502 feet from home plate).
The Triangle: The deepest part of the park in right-center field. Can be a haven for speedy hitters and a nightmare for outfielders, who have to play the ball off what can be outrageous caroms.
Previous All-Star Games.
July 9, 1946: AL wins, 12-0, in the most one-sided contest in all-star game history. Boston's Ted Williams outhits the entire NL with two home runs and two singles. He finished with 5 RBI and 4 runs. Three AL pitchers (Bob Feller, Hal Newhouser and Jack Kramer) hold NL to three singles.
July 31, 1961: Only all-star game tie ends in 1-1 draw after nine innings and a 30-minute rain delay. Detroit's Rocky Colavito knocked in AL run with a first-inning homer. St. Louis's Bill White has NL RBI with a single off Boston pitcher Don Schwall in the sixth. Teams combine for nine hits.
American League Starters.
in batting order
LF Kenny Lofton Cleveland Indians
Seventh consecutive all-star appearance. .364 average in all-star games with four stolen bases. Four-time Gold Glove winner. Led AL last season with 18 outfield assists. Also walked more than he struck out last season for the second time in his career. Was a starter on the University of Arizona basketball team.
SS Nomar Garciaparra Boston Red Sox
Second all-star selection. 1997 AL rookie of the year, only sixth unanimous selection. Finished second in AL MVP voting in 1998. Fifth player in major league history to hit 30 or more homers in each of first two seasons. Was first Red Sox rookie to be named to all-star game since Fred Lynn in 1975.
.366 276 53 101 14 57
CF Ken Griffey Jr. Seattle Mariners
10th all-star selection. Led AL in voting for seventh time and majors in voting for fifth time. Won home run contest and was 2 for 3 with RBI in last year's game. All-star MVP in 1992. Second youngest player in major league history to reach 300 home runs. Fourth youngest player to reach 1,000 RBI.
.310332 69 103 29 81
RF Manny Ramirez Cleveland Indians
Third all-star selection. Among AL top 10 in batting average, home runs, runs, total bases and slugging percentage. One of seven players in history to hit six home runs over a three-game span (Sept. 15-17, 1998) and one of two players in history to hit eight homers in five games (Sept. 15-19, 1998).
.333 303 71 101 25 96
1B Jim Thome Cleveland Indians
Third all-star selection, first as starter. 30 home runs in 1998 made him first left-handed batter in Indians' history to hit 30 or more homers in three straight seasons. Hit third grand slam in ALCS history against New York last year. 12 career postseason homers tied for fifth all-time with Yogi Berra.
.283 258 50 73 14 50
3B Cal Ripken Baltimore Orioles
17th all-star selection, 16th consecutive start. Third election as third baseman. Only major league player to start the last 16 all-star games. Holds major league record for consecutive all-star starts. MVP of 1991 all-star game. Led major leagues in all-star voting four times.
.313 230 33 72 12 38
DH Rafael Palmeiro Texas Rangers
Fourth all-star selection and second consecutive. Among AL leaders in average, home runs, RBI, total bases, slugging percentage and hits. As an Oriole last season, went 2 for 2 with an RBI in the AL's 13-8 victory in Denver. A Gold Glove winner in 1997 and 1998. Also received Silver Slugger award last season.
.355 310 45 110 22 76
C Ivan Rodriguez Texas Rangers
Eighth straight all-star appearance (the most ever for a Ranger) and seventh straight start. Fifth catcher in major league history to start as many as six all-star games. Has .300 average (7 for 20) in all-star games. Only catcher in top 10 in steals this season with 17. Winner of seven Gold Gloves.
.295 302 51 89 15 49
2B Roberto Alomar Cleveland Indians
10th all-star selection, ninth straight appearance. Seven career Gold Gloves. Entered the season as AL's all-time fielding percentage leader at second base. All-time Baltimore Orioles' leader in batting average (.312). MVP of last year's all-star game after going 3 for 4 with a homer and RBI.
.324 321 78 104 12 60
P Pedro Martinez Boston Red Sox
Fourth all-star selection. Attempting to become first pitcher since Denny McLain in 1968 to win 30 games in a season. Among AL leaders in wins, innings pitched, strikeouts, opponents' batting average, winning percentage and earned run average. Pitched a perfect sixth inning in 1997 all-star game.
15-3 2.10 024 184
National League Starters.
in batting order
SS Barry Larkin Cincinnati Reds
10th all-star appearance. Fourth start as all-star shortstop. 315 career steals in 372 attempts is one of highest success rates in major league history. Led NL hitters with a .430 average in June and drove in 20 runs. Three-time NL Gold Glove winner and was NL MVP in 1995. Is 1 for 11 in all-star games.
.312 311 5397 9 52
RF Larry Walker Colorado Rockies
Fourth all-star appearance. Won first NL batting title last season with .363 average. Third player in last 60 years to hit better than .360 in consecutive seasons. Four-time Gold Glove winner, was '97 NL MVP. In 1997 All-Star Game, switched to right side of plate against Randy Johnson after Johnson threw at him in jest.
.382 275 73 105 25 77
CF Sammy Sosa Chicago Cubs
Third all-star game; didn't play last year because of injury. First all-star start. The '98 NL MVP, Sosa was second to Mark McGwire in home runs (66). Led NL in RBI, runs and total bases last season. His 11 multi-homer games in '98 tied major league record set by Hank Greenberg in 1938.
.286 336 66 96 32 74
1B Mark McGwire St. Louis Cardinals
11th all-star appearance. Last year hit record 70 home runs and is going for fourth straight season with 50 or more home runs. Has four hits (all singles) in 18 all-star at-bats. Set NL record with 162 walks last season. Won rookie of the year and AL home run championship in 1987.
.266 289 59 77 28 72
3B Matt Williams Arizona Diamondbacks
Fifth all-star selection, although Williams missed last two appearances because of injuries. Among league leaders in home runs, RBI, multi-hit games, runs, hits, total bases, doubles and extra-base hits. Was NL player of the month for April, when he hit .357 and knocked in 25 runs.
.318 358 64 114 23 82
DH Jeff Bagwell Houston Astros
Replaced Tony Gwynn in starting lineup. Fourth all-star appearance. First player in Houston history to have 100-plus RBI in three straight seasons. Second to Jose Cruz on Houston's career RBI list. NL rookie of the year in 1991. Only player in Houston history in 30-30 club for steals and home runs in a season.
.316 304 81 96 28 78
C Mike Piazza New York Mets
Seventh all-star appearance. 1996 all-star MVP (2 for 3 with a 445-foot home run, a double and two RBI). Was second in season MVP voting twice. Led the majors last season with four grand slams. Received more than three times as many votes as second-place catcher (Pittsburgh's Jason Kendall).
.317 271 47 86 19 57
LF Jeromy Burnitz Milwaukee Brewers
This will be his first all-star game. Named NL player of the month for June after hitting 12 home runs and knocking in 31 RBI. Was sixth in home runs (38) and fifth in RBI (125) in NL last season. 125 RBI led all left-handers in NL. Led Brewers with 10 outfield assists last season.
.281 317 58 89 26 73
2B Jay Bell Arizona Diamondbacks
Second all-star appearance. In first with Pirates in 1993, Bell went 0 for 1. Having a career season and has already set career mark in home runs. Trailed Houston's Craig Biggio in all-star voting by more than 40,000 votes with one week left in balloting, but won by 32,000 votes.
.286 343 77 98 24 65
P Curt Schilling Philadelphia Phillies
Third straight all-star appearance. Led NL in strikeouts the last two seasons. In 1997, led majors with 319 strikeouts, a NL record for strikeouts by a right-hander. Also reached 300 strikeouts faster than any pitcher in history (236.2 innings). Has 37 complete games over the last four seasons.
CAPTION: Fenway Park's famous Green Monster is all dressed up for tonight's All-Star Game.