Morneau, Nathan, Mauer headed to All-Star gameMINNEAPOLIS (AP) — The Minnesota Twins will send a familiar trio to the All-Star game later this month: Joe Mauer, Justin Morneau and Joe Nathan. The teams were revealed Sunday afternoon.
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — The Minnesota Twins will send a familiar trio to the All-Star game later this month: Joe Mauer, Justin Morneau and Joe Nathan.
The teams were revealed Sunday afternoon.
“I would’ve been very disappointed if these guys hadn’t made” the team, manager Ron Gardenhire said.
Fans voted Mauer in as the starting catcher for the American League squad for the second straight season. This is his third All-Star honor. Mauer had more than 4.3 million ballots cast for him — the fourth-most votes in the majors behind Albert Pujols, Chase Utley and Derek Jeter.
Morneau, who will also play in his third All-Star game, was picked by the fans for the home run derby, a contest the first baseman won last year. But he might not defend his title.
“It’s something I’m leaning toward not doing,” said Morneau, who hit his 21st homer in Sunday’s 6-0 win over Detroit. “It’s one of those things where maybe I could use that extra time off and just go there, play the game, and enjoy it. The last two I’ve been in the home run derby, and it’s been kind of hectic and I haven’t really got to enjoy it too much.”
Mauer, who has already hit a career-high 14 homers despite missing all of April to a back injury, volunteered to take his place.
“It’s a great event. If I was asked, I’d go,” Mauer said, smiling.
Nathan will go to the midsummer classic for a fourth time. This year, Nathan has converted 22 of 24 saves. His last blown chance came on May 15.
The veteran closer joined Mauer and Morneau at the All-Star game last season as Minnesota’s representatives, and they’ll have a chance to see three former teammates. Johan Santana (Mets) is a pitcher for the NL team, and Jason Barlett (Rays) and Torii Hunter (Angels) are reserves for the AL.