SAN FRANCISCO -- His 12-year managerial career has brought him six appearances as an All-Star Game coach, but Bruce Bochy's earliest Midsummer Classic memory came all the way back in 1967.
The then 12-year-old National League fan watched as the two teams battled it out in extra innings, with Tony Perez hitting the go-ahead home run in the 15th inning.
"I remember how excited I was," Bochy said. "That's a game I will never forget. I grew up a little bit of a Reds fan, and here Tony Perez comes through."
Bochy would later find himself with a front-row ticket to the 1999 All-Star Game, where the nominees for the All-Century team, including Ted Williams, were honored before the game. Having led the San Diego Padres to the 1998 NL pennant, Bochy was the manager of the NL squad for the game.
"If I look at the most special moment, it was 1999," Bochy said. "Even though we lost that game, in the pregame festivities they had the All-Century team, they had all the legends, Ted Williams came out. That was pretty special. I got goose bumps. It's something I'll never forget."
The NL lost that game, 4-1, and Bochy got another shot at managing the NL side in the 2011 game, which the AL won, 5-1. Bochy was part of the NL coaching staff for the 1997, 2001, '07 and '10 games as well.
In the 2001 game, Bochy watched as a Vladimir Guerrero broken bat caused third-base coach Tommy Lasorda to trip and tumble over.
"He tried to dodge it, couldn't dodge it, and he went over like Humpty Dumpty," Bochy said. "That was probably as hard as I've laughed in a long time."
The 2012 All-Star Game will be played at Kauffman Stadium in Kansas City on Tuesday, July 10. Come to MLB.com for extensive online coverage of the All-Star Week festivities.
The 83rd All-Star Game will be televised nationally by FOX Sports, in Canada by Rogers Sportsnet and RDS, and worldwide by partners in more than 200 countries via MLB International's independent feed. ESPN Radio and ESPN Radio Deportes will provide national radio coverage of the All-Star Game. MLB Network and Sirius XM will also provide comprehensive All-Star Week coverage. For more information, please visit allstargame.com
Jay Lee is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.