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Fair first trips for Zito, Tejada07/10/2002 3:08 AM ET
By John Schlegel / MLB.com
MILWAUKEE -- Miguel Tejada was taking care of a few last details, making his way out of the American League clubhouse after his first All-Star Game, looking a little bit weary but still managing a smile. "I was very happy I got to play and spend time with all these stars," Tejada said. "I'm taking a lot of good memories with me." Despite being one of five shortstops selected to the American League squad, the A's shortstop had gotten plenty of playing time, going 1-for-2 and scoring the go-ahead run in the seventh inning of what turned out to be a 7-7 tie. A's lefty Barry Zito also had a pretty fair first trip. He went into the game knowing he was going to start the sixth inning, and that's what he did, registering a groundout against his one hitter, the Dodgers' Shawn Green. The debuts of the two A's certainly pleased one of their teammates on Tuesday, an American League player who took a special interest in the two young Athletics. For so long, Jason Giambi was the veteran leader of the young Oakland A's, so it was only natural that he felt a sense of pride when he shared the American League clubhouse with first-time All-Stars Zito and Tejada. Of course, Giambi plays for the New York Yankees now, but for the time being he's sharing a clubhouse again with a couple of his old Oakland teammates. "I was there at the beginning, watching those guys grow, so it's really exciting for me to see them here," Giambi said. "I'm happy for both of them, but especially for Miggy because he has such a tough position at shortstop to make the All-Star team." Any advice from the formerly scruffy leader of the young-n-fun A's? "I just told them to enjoy every minute of it, because there are no guarantees you'll be back," Giambi said. "I know they're loving every bit of it." Actually, Zito said he got most of his tips about the All-Star Game before he left Oakland from fellow rotation mate Tim Hudson, who played in the 2000 All-Star Game in Atlanta.
"Huddy got me prepared for a lot of the stuff that goes on here," Zito said. "He said I needed to get hats from everybody, get a lot of balls signed and film everything."Perhaps one thing the two weren't prepared for: the announcement of lineups. They had to do a quick switcheroo just as Tejada's name was being announced, because he and Zito lined up in the wrong order. But they worked well together once they got in the game. Zito entered the game in the bottom of the sixth, knowing it was his job to get just one out -- and he got it when Green grounded out to Tejada at short. Then Tejada scored his run the next inning, making it a nice first All-Star Game for both of them. Zito knows there are no guarantees, but he hopes this isn't close to his last experience in the Midsummer Classic. "I expect to be back here every year, but you never know," he said.
This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.