By Steve Ginsburg
KANSAS CITY (Reuters) - The National League erupted for five runs in the first inning and limited the American League to just six singles to win the All-Star game 8-0 on Tuesday, the first shutout in the Midsummer Classic since 1996.
A 382-foot, two-run homer by San Francisco Giants outfielder Melky Cabrera and a three-run triple by his Giants team mate Pablo Sandoval highlighted the N.L. attack.
The N.L. battered starter Justin Verlander in the top of the first on a run-scoring double by Ryan Braun, Sandoval's game-turning triple that stayed just inside the foul pole and an RBI infield single by Dan Uggla.
Verlander threw 35 pitches, surrendering four hits and two walks in his only inning of work and was tagged with the loss.
The N.L's first-inning fireworks sapped the enthusiasm from the crowd of 40,933 on a 90-degree (32c) night inside 39-year-old Kauffman Stadium.
An RBI single by Matt Holliday and Cabrera's shot into the left-field bullpen off Texas's Matt Harrison hiked the N.L.'s lead to 8-0 in the fourth.
The A.L's best chance to get back into the game occurred in the fifth but Texas Rangers second baseman Ian Kinsler flied out to left with the bases loaded to end the threat.
N.L. starter Matt Cain of the Giants, who surrendered two hits in two innings, got the win.
The National League's victory gives them the home-field advantage in the World Series, a bonus not lost on the St. Louis Cardinals, who won Game Seven of the Fall Classic a year ago on their home turf against the Texas Rangers.
(Editing by Peter Rutherford)
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