KANSAS CITY, MO. – C.J. Cron, Jorge Polanco, Nelson Cruz and Eddie Rosario received enough votes to quality for the next phase of All-Star voting.
“The Starter’s Election” will begin 11 a.m. Wednesday and last for 28 hours before ending at 3 p.m. Thursday. It will determine the starting lineups for the Midsummer Classic on July 9 in Cleveland. The starters will be announced Thursday night.
Any player who finished in the top three in “The Primary” balloting at his position — top nine for outfielders — moved on to the next round.
Polanco was the leading vote-getter among shortstops. Cron was third among first basemen, Cruz third among designated hitters and Rosario sixth among outfielders.
Max Kepler narrowly missed out on joining Rosario — he trailed Texas’ Joey Gallo by 138 votes for the final spot.
Pitchers and reserves will be named June 30.
Miguel Sano entered Friday’s game in an 0-for-15 skid with 10 strikeouts, and struck out his first two at-bats.
That put his strikeout rate for the season at 40.2%. If he had enough at-bats to quality, that would lead baseball as well as be a career high. Sano has gotten to that high percentage with a surge of strikeouts lately.
He has struck out in 12 consecutive games. He has struck out 25 times in his past 57 plate appearances, a 43.8% clip.
His strikeoutfest peaked Tuesday during the 17-inning win over Boston, when Sano struck out five times in seven plate appearances.
“Has he had some swing-and-miss issues over the last week or so? Maybe,” Twins manager Rocco Baldelli said. “Really the kind of hitter he is. He’s the kind of guy who is going to occasionally swing and miss at pitches, we know that.”
Baldelli did not sound like someone worried about his burly slugger. Sano, Baldelli feels, will have streaks like the one he’s on now but also will have surges when he’s punishing pitchers.
Sano’s z-swing percentage — the percentage of times he swings at strikes — is 76.2 percent, which would be a career high. He’s not chasing many bad pitches — although he’s had a rash of checked swings — he’s getting beat on pitches in the strike zone. And Baldelli says things will even out.
“He’s also the guy who gets on base and he’s also a guy who impacts the ball,” Baldelli said. “We don’t know when that is going to happen.
“We can go through some stretch where it doesn’t happen, then all of a sudden he is leading our team to victory several nights in a row. He makes big things happen.”
Parker rejoins team
Reliever Blake Parker returned to the club on Friday after spending a couple of days with his wife, Jordan, at their home in Fayetteville, Ark., to make sure there were no issues with her pregnancy.
The Parkers’ baby is due in three weeks.
“Yeah, everything’s great,” Parker said. “I’ve got a pregnant wife at the house so there was a little bit of complications there, but everything seems to be back on track and good to go.”
It’s a relief for Parker, who got a message on Wednesday that he was needed at home. He immediately left the club and headed to Fayetteville. But everything has turned out fine. This will be their second child together.
Parker drove up Interstate 49 to Kansas City to join the team.
• Mitch Garver, who left Thursday’s game with a sore left heel, was not in the starting lineup on Friday, but Baldelli said Garver is doing well and that he was only removed from the game as a precaution.