It's official: MLB announces All-Star Game is coming back to Philly for 2026

Mike DeNardo
April 16, 2019 - 6:00 pm
Apr 16, 2019; Philadelphia, PA, USA; A young fan looks on as Philadelphia Phillies owner John Middleton addresses fans and media during an event at Independence Mall to announce Philadelphia as the host of the 2026 All Star Game.

Bill Streicher/USA TODAY Sports

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PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio) — It's the worst kept secret, but the MLB officially announced on Tuesday that the 2026 All-Star Game is coming to Philadelphia in celebration of the nation's 250th birthday. 

The official announcement was made on a stage at Independence Mall by Major League Baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred.

"The 2026 All-Star Game has been awarded to the Philadelphia Phillies and the city of Philadelphia," he said. 

The game was in Philadelphia for the 1976 bicentennial, and again at the Veterans Stadium in 1996. John Middleton, who was 21-years-old at the time, attended the 1976 game—thanks to a scalped ticket. He's now the Phillies managing partner.

"This is a big deal. This will be a national game, and a national game at a moment when everybody's eyes are going to be on Philadelphia," said Middleton. 

Related: 2026 MLB All-Star Game will be in Philadelphia

A few hundred fans waving rally towels cheered their heroes, including the Middleton's major free agent acquisition Bryce Harper.

"To be in the Home Run Derby, to be part of the parade, just for the city and the fans and everything like that—you guys are going to enjoy it so much," Harper said.

Manfred said Phillies chairman David Montgomery first approached him about hosting the 2026 game about two years ago. 

"We've been talking to David about it for a while.  And I think this was something that was really important to him and for the city of Philadelphia.  He was passionate about it.  You know, it's not easy to do 7 years out.  There's a lot of logistics that need to get handled with extra lead time.  And everybody worked hard to make it happen. I think a big part of that was wanting to deliver for Dave."
   
Montgomery did not attend the announcement due to health reasons.