Sat, Jul 19th 2008, 09:12
Observing the best in the game is what really stood out to Hanley Ramirez when he thinks about his All-Star experience.
The 24-year-old Marlins shortstop, who was voted into the starting lineup of the National League squad by the fans, said he picked up pointers just by watching.
Two players he kept an eye on were Atlanta’s Chipper Jones and St. Louis’ Albert Pujols.
“I learned a lot from Chipper and Pujols,” Ramirez said. “Watching them and how they go about their business.
“It was a pretty good time. When you’re next to all the big guys in this game, that’s amazing. I was glad I was part of it. The best thing is what I learned from those guys.”
Ramirez batted leadoff and went 2-for-3, with a pair of singles. He even scored a run, which at the time made it 2-0 in favor of the NL before eventually falling, 4-3, to the American League in the last Midsummer Classic at Yankee Stadium in 15 innings.
In his third full season, Ramirez already is regarded as one of the top all-around offensive players in the game.
Ramirez was the second Marlin voted into the starting lineup by the fans. The first was Gary Sheffield in 1993.
In New York, Ramirez was surprised at how many people knew him.
“I was like, a lot of people knew me,” he said. “Everybody was shouting my name.”