Barrett, VISIT Milwaukee want MLB to bring All-Star game here

It's being moved from Atlanta in response to Georgia's new election law

American Family Field
American Family Field

Last updated on April 6th, 2021 at 01:42 pm

Major League Baseball is looking for a new host city for the 2021 All-Star Game and Milwaukee’s ready to go to bat.

MLB Commissioner Robert Manfred Jr. announced Friday that this year’s All-Star Game and MLB draft will no longer take place in Atlanta. The move is in response to Georgia’s new election law, which is being criticized by some (including the CEOs of Coca-Cola and Delta Air Lines) as making it harder for people to vote, especially in communities of color. Supporters of the new law say it will improve election integrity.

In a letter released Friday afternoon, Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett asked Manfred to consider relocating the All-Star festivities to Milwaukee and American Family Field.

“It is a particularly appropriate location to honor Hank Aaron who is a revered and beloved former Milwaukeean,” Barrett’s letter said. “He started and concluded his Major League career with teams here.”

Aaron, one of the greatest baseball players of all time, who started his career with the Milwaukee Braves and ended it with the Milwaukee Brewers, passed away in January. He will be honored during this season’s All-Star festivities.

Barrett said the city would be honored to host the All-Star Game — set to take place July 13 — adding MLB would have full support in putting on a successful event.

VISIT Milwaukee is also on board. The tourism bureau’s new sports division, Sports Milwaukee, “would be beyond thrilled to assist the Milwaukee Brewers and the city of Milwaukee in welcoming back the MLB All-Star game,” said Marissa Werner, director of sports development for VISIT Milwaukee. 

The Brewers did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

“Major League Baseball fundamentally supports voting rights for all Americans and opposes restrictions to the ballot box. In 2020, MLB became the first professional sports league to join the non-partisan Civic Alliance to help build a future in which everyone participates in shaping the United States. We proudly used our platform to encourage baseball fans and communities throughout our country to perform their civic duty and actively participate in the voting process. Fair access to voting continues to have our game’s unwavering support,” Manfred said in his statement Friday.

Miller Park was the site of the 2002 MLB All-Star Game. The 1975 and 1955 MLB All-Star Games were played at Milwaukee County Stadium.

On Sunday, Milwaukee County Executive David Crowley also reached out to Manfred, expressing support for MLB’s decision to move the All-Star events out of Atlanta and campaigning for Milwaukee as the new host site.

“I join the Mayor Tom Barrett in asking you to consider choosing the City of Milwaukee as the new location for this year’s All-Star Game. Milwaukee would serve as an appropriate location to honor the life and legacy of the late Hank Aaron. He started and ended his career in Milwaukee and used his career as a platform to champion civil rights,” Crowley wrote in a letter, on behalf of the county “and the many local leaders here dedicated to the protection of civil rights and achieving racial equity.”

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Maredithe Meyer
Maredithe Meyer covers restaurants, retail, tourism, and sports and entertainment. She joined BizTimes in 2015, previously as an intern reporter. She earned a degree in journalism from Marquette University in 2017. When she's not on the job, Maredithe coaches field hockey and loves exploring her favorite city on earth, Milwaukee.

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