The 1951 game was originally awarded to the Philadelphia Phillies. The City of Detroit was celebrating the 250th anniversary of its founding in 1701 and requested to host the year's All-Star Game. Although the National League was scheduled to host the game in '51, the game was moved to Detroit. The Phillies hosted the 1952 Game.
Long-time Tigers player Harry Heilmann died at age 56 in Detroit the day prior to the game. A moment of silence was observed in Heilmann's memory prior to the game's start.
The American League was 7-5 favorites to win the game. The ceremonial first pitch was delivered by Ty Cobb. Chico Carrasquel became the first Latin American player in Major League history to start in an All-Star game.
Ralph Kiner became the first All-Star player to hit a home run in three consecutive games.
Both leagues combined to hit six home runs, an All-Star record which has been tied but not yet broken.
Joe DiMaggio, who did not play due to a leg injury, would announce his retirement at the end of this season, making this his final All-Star selection.
Casey Stengel chose Bob Lemon instead of Bob Feller for his team, then Feller pitched his third no-hitter on July 1; the New York Times quoted Stengel as saying, "That cooks me. How could I know the guy was gonna pitch a no-hitter?"