This was the third time that the Tigers had hosted the All-Star Game (at the previous two in 1941 and 1951, Tiger Stadium had been called Briggs Stadium). This would be the last time Tiger Stadium hosted the All-Star Game, as when it returned to Detroit in 2005, the Tigers had moved to their new home at Comerica Park.
This was the first American League win since the second All-Star Game of 1962, and would be their last until the 54th All-Star Game in 1983. Over the twenty game stretch from 1963–1982, the American League would go 1–19; the worst stretch for either league in the history of the exhibition.
Jake O'Donnell would retire from umpiring after the 1971 season, after only three years on the job, but would go on to work as a long time referee in the NBA. His work in this game makes him the only person to officiate in a Major League Baseball All-Star Game, and an NBA All-Star Game.
In the third inning, Hank Aaron launched a two out solo home run (his first career All-Star Game home run) off of Blue to give the NL a 3-0 lead.
The AL responded in the bottom of the third inning. With Dock Ellis still pitching for the NL, Luis Aparicio singled to lead off the inning. Reggie Jackson was sent up to pinch hit for the pitcher, Vida Blue, and hit a two run home run. Rod Carew walked. Three batters later, with two outs, Frank Robinson hit a two run home run to give the AL a 4-3 lead.
Vida Blue was credited with the win. Dock Ellis was credited with the loss. Mickey Lolich was credited with the save.
All of the scoring came via the home run, all six home runs hit in the game and all the runs scored were by future Hall of Fame players. The six total home runs hit by both teams tied an All-Star Game record.
Frank Robinson became the first player in All-Star Game history to hit home runs for both leagues over the course of his career.
Reggie Jackson's home run is described as "especially memorable", as it hit one of the light standards on the roof of the stadium, credibly estimated to have landed 520 feet from home plate.
Roberto Clemente would be named to the 1972 National League squad, but would be replaced due to injury. This game marked his final All-Star Game appearance.
A total of 26 future Hall of Famers were present for this game: 21 players, both managers, National League coach Walt Alston, Hall of Fame umpire Doug Harvey, and future Hall of Fame manager Joe Torre.