Fenway Park hosted its third MLB All-Star Game in 1999, a midsummer classic highlighted by Ted Williams' final appearance at the park and Pedro Martinez's throttling of the National League All-Star lineup. In anticipation for the game, the team installed temporary press boxes on the first and third-base sides of Fenway Park's roof, which were converted into suites after the game. The Red Sox capped this special Fenway Park season by reaching the playoffs and beating the Indians in an exciting ALDS, before losing to the Yankees in the American League Championship Series.

The Red Sox

Record: 94-68, 2nd in American League East (Wild Card)
Manager: James F. Williams
Attendance: 2,446,162
Postseason: Won American League Division Series

Pedro Martinez had a season for the ages in 1999 with a 23-4 record, 2.07 ERA, and 313/37 strikeout to walk ratio. Martinez earned the AL Cy Young Award for his efforts and finished second in the MVP race.

The Red Sox started the season 5-0 on the road, and then won their home opener behind a Bret Saberhagen 6-0 shutout of the White Sox.

Nomar Garciaparra had an outstanding year in his third full season in Boston, highlighted by his remarkable performance at Fenway Park on May 10. That day, Garciaparra hit three home runs (two of which were grand slams) and drove in 10 runs, tying Fred Lynn's club record of 10 RBIs in one game.

Five days later, the Red Sox announced plans for a new Fenway Park to be built across the street from the existing stadium, but uncertainty remained about how the new park would be financed.

In July, Fenway Park hosted its third Major League Baseball All-Star Game. Ted Williams made a poignant, final appearance at the park during pregame ceremonies before Pedro Martinez dominated the National League's top hitters in the game itself. Martinez was named All-Star Game MVP after striking out five of the six batters he faced.

The Red Sox remained in second place for most of the season and clinched a playoff berth against with Cleveland in a rematch of the previous season's ALDS. In the series, the teams split the first four games to set up a winner-take-all finale. In the deciding game, Troy O'Leary hit a grand slam and a three-run home run and Pedro Martinez pitched six no-hit innings in relief to secure the victory. The Red Sox advanced to the ALCS and fought gamely against the Yankees but managed just one victory (behind a strong Martinez performance in Game Three) before being eliminated.

Renovations

With Fenway Park set to host the 1999 All-Star Game, improvements to the home and visiting clubhouses were completed shortly before the start of the season. Temporary press boxes were also installed on the left-field and right-field roofs in anticipation of the Midsummer Classic. After the All-Star Game, the boxes would become the K and B suites at the ballpark.

Non-Red Sox Baseball At Fenway Park

Fenway Park showcased one of the most memorable All-Star weeks in baseball history in 1999. On July 12, a star-studded home run derby was highlighted by the memorable performances of sluggers like Ken Griffey Jr., Mark McGwire and Sammy Sosa. Griffey defeated Milwaukee's Jeromy Burnitz in the final round to win the derby crown. The following night, Red Sox legend Ted Williams made his final public appearance at Fenway Park during the All-Star game's pregame ceremonies. Introduced as "the greatest hitter of all time," Williams was showered with a standing ovation and the enthusiastic greetings of both All-Star teams, as players like Nomar Garciaparra and Tony Gwynn surrounded Williams at the pitcher's mound before he threw out the ceremonial first pitch. It was one of the most poignant moments in the ballpark's history and set the stage for the dominant performance of Sox right-hander Pedro Martinez, who struck out five of six National League batters in two innings of work. For his efforts, Martinez was named All-Star Game MVP in a 4-1 American League victory.

1999 Non-Red Sox Baseball At Fenway Park
April 29Boston College 4, University of Massachusetts 2 (Beanpot Championship)*
April 29Harvard 7, Northeastern 1 (Beanpot Consolation)*
July 11All-Star Futures Game: World 7, United States 0
July 12MLB Home Run Derby: National League 39, American League 23
July 13MLB All-Star Game: American League 4, National League 1

*Starting in 1990, Fenway Park has hosted the annual Baseball Beanpot, baseball's version of the longstanding Boston hockey tradition. Originally, the competition featured the same schools that battle for Hockey Beanpot: Boston College, Boston University, Northeastern University and Harvard University. However, when BU dropped their baseball program after the 1995 season, the University of Massachusetts took their place. The Baseball Beanpot has been held at Fenway Park every year since its inception except for in 2004 and 2010, when the tournament was played at Campanelli Stadium in Brockton, MA.

1999 All-Star Game Leaves Fenway Crowd Awed

In 1999, Fenway Park hosted the MLB All-Star Game for the third time in the ballpark’s history, and Ted Williams had something to do with the contest for the third time as well. Williams had gone 4-4 with two home runs in 1946 when the game was first played at Fenway Park, and in his first year of retirement he delivered the ceremonial first pitch before Fenway's second All-Star Game in 1961.

Fans and players alike couldn’t help but notice the atmosphere and aura of the setting before the 1999 All-Star Game. Jim Thome perhaps said it best when he described the atmosphere as “something out of Field of Dreams."

Setting the scene were more than 30 members of the All-Century Team who took the field during pre-game ceremonies. The last luminary to be introduced was Williams, who made a dramatic entrance through the center-field roll-up door and traced the right-field/first base warning track on a golf cart. Once on the infield, the Splendid Splinter found himself surrounded near the mound by past and present greats. The moment was one that no baseball fan will ever forget.

After a delay to the program of more than 30 minutes while the sport’s greats departed from the script to greet Teddy Ballgame, few expected the actual Midsummer Classic to top what they had witnessed before the game. However, Red Sox ace, and the American League’s starting pitcher, Pedro Martinez put on a show to remember. Martinez’s brilliance called to mind the historic performance of Carl Hubbell, who struck out five future Hall of Famers (Ruth, Gehrig, Foxx, Simmons, and Cronin) in the 1934 All-Star Game six and a half decades earlier.

In a dominating performance against a powerful National League lineup, Martinez struck out the first four batters, and five of the six he faced, on his way to All-Star Game MVP honors. Thome and Cal Ripken each singled in a run in the first inning for the AL, while Martinez’s efforts kicked off an outstanding night by the AL pitching staff. The AL won 4-1 and 34,187 fans went home having witnessed one of the most remarkable All-Star Games in history.

Fenway Park in 1991 (Credit: Boston Red Sox)