All-Star Game: Making a wish come true
Three Southern California teenagers with debilitating diseases and a love for baseball spent part of the last two days around the Chase Field batting cages, rubbing elbows with their heroes at the All-Star Game.
Zachary McMasters, 13, from Rancho Cucamonga, Steven Contreras, 17, of Wilmington and Erick Cruz, 18, of Claremont were among six kids brought to the All-Star Game as guests of the Make-A-Wish Foundation.
Contreras, who played football and baseball at Rolling Hills Prep despite losing half his left leg to Ewing's sarcoma, is a huge Dodgers fans who "bleeds blue and white," he said Tuesday.
"Baseball is my love," said Contreras, who will mark one year in remission on July 23. "I've been playing it since I was 3 years old. I can't think of anything better to do."
His favorite players are Dodgers Matt Kemp and Andre Ethier. He got a chance to visit with Ethier and collect an autograph Tuesday.
"There was too many kids going. So they sent to this one," said Cruz, who made the Claremont High varsity as a freshman before being diagnosed with leukemia. "That's kind of a plus for me because this is way better than just going down the street."
Cruz, who was diagnosed in 2007, is also in remission and could be taken off medication this year.
McMasters, who has recovered from brain cancer, played on two baseball teams this spring and is planning to try out for his high school's freshman team next month.
McMasters, who still suffers from persistent headaches, follows the Phillies and Angels. He spent some time at Chase Field with Phillie All-Stars Shane Victorino and Cole Hamels.
The six Make-A-Wish guests watched Tuesday's game from a luxury suite.
-- Kevin Baxter in Phoenix
Photo: (from left to right) Fans Clayton "Bo" Anderson, Erick Cruz, Scott Selman, Steven Contreras and Zachary McMasters pose with New York Mets outfielder Carlos Beltran prior to the start of the MLB All-Star Game on Tuesday. Credit: David J. Phillip / Associated Press