Giancarlo Stanton speaks about All-Star experience
Giancarlo Stanton stood on the outfield grass Tuesday afternoon at Marlins Park after taking batting practice.
The 20 minutes or so he spent hanging out with a few of his All-Star teammates were one of the few moments of relaxation Stanton has had over the past two days.
Since he got off a plane from San Francisco some time around 5 a.m. Monday morning after the Marlins’ last road trip before the All-Star break, Stanton has been busy being one of the faces of his team and Miami at numerous events.
Although Stanton was an All-Star participant and not officially an All-Star Ambassador, he was able to juggle both roles well.
“It’s just owning it,” Stanton said. “Owning everything that comes with it and being in your city. Just be proud. Be proud of the work you put in. We have long, grueling days, grueling schedules sometimes. These are times when we sit back and be thankful for the work.”
Stanton, who has baseball’s biggest contract — a 13-year, $325 million deal he signed in 2014, has become more and more visible nationwide appearing in T-Mobile commercials, as well as other ads for baseball and other products.
Recently, the silhouette of Stanton swinging a bat appeared on the side of the Intercontinental hotel near downtown Miami.
Stanton also represented the Marlins and the United States during its run to the World Baseball Classic championship this past March.
Just before first pitch Tuesday night, Stanton was chosen to be one of the faces of Miami again during a pregame ceremony honoring Hispanic Hall of Famers.
Stanton greeted members of the family of Roberto Clemente and presented a bouquet of flowers to Clemente’s widow, Vera.
Stanton made the All-Star team as a reserve this year, but Cubs manager Joe Maddon made him the National League’s designated hitter and had him hit second in the lineup as he has recently for the Marlins.
Stanton’s All-Star Game day began early Tuesday as he spent the morning with Alex Rodriguez celebrating the refurbishment of the baseball field at Boys & Girls Club of Miami-Dade’s Kendall club.
Stanton was there on behalf of the All-Star Smiles program, providing free dental care and checkups to local kids.
Following that event, Stanton rushed over to downtown and took part in the MLB All-Star Red Carpet parade. Stanton rode in one of the first cars in the caravan as he waved to cheering fans along the route that took him north on Biscayne Boulevard.
After a quick change, he was at Marlins Park in time for batting practice.
“That’s our job,” Stanton said. “That’s our duty, especially when the spotlight is brightest, which is right now. So you got to get out there and help out the community, help our charities and push it during a time like this, where there’s so much buzz and media around it, to get awareness out.”
And this came a day after a tough loss in the Home Run Derby on Monday night.
Stanton didn’t stick around after his early exit from the Derby as he rushed over to Miami Beach to host the T-Mobile “Derby After Dark” event at the Faena Forum on Collins Avenue.
The party had a guest list that included actor Miles Teller, singer Christina Milian, and a host of All-Star baseball players.
“It was a lot of fun,” Stanton said. “I did a lot of cool things. There were a lot of cool things around Miami. It was fun getting everything going being around all these guys.”
The fatigue may have taken its toll toward the end of his first round defeat to Yankees’ catcher Gary Sanchez.
After only four home runs through the first minute and 30 seconds, Stanton took a timeout and then started crushing balls in typical Stanton fashion, hitting several more than 480 feet.
But after cutting Sanchez’s lead to 17-15, Stanton mustered only one more home run in the bonus 30-second round and the exhaustion showed as he popped up several pitches.
Even in defeat, Stanton left the eventual winner, Aaron Judge, impressed.
“He was crushing them out of there,” Judge said. “He was fun to watch. The way he was getting the fans going, they were loving it. That was a pretty cool experience.”
As far as Stanton’s plans before he and the Marlins start the second half Friday night at home against the Dodgers.
“I'm going to take these two days [off] and hopefully don't see anyone and don't do a dang thing.”