Double dose of star power as Perkins joins Mauer on All-Star team

It’s the first time two Twins players both from Minnesota will attend baseball’s summer showcase.

Joe Mauer seemed to be a lock to make his sixth American League All-Star team — but would he get to bring a friend?

Closer Glen Perkins is in the middle of a dominant season but, as a product of the 37-47 Twins, he entered Saturday just seventh in the all-important saves category. Detroit manager Jim Leyland, who will run the AL team, came to the rescue.

Leyland personally named Perkins to the All-Star team, giving the Twins two players at the Midsummer’s Classic on July 16 at Citi Field in New York.

It also will be the first time that two Twins players with local ties were on the same All-Star team, as both Mauer and Perkins are 30-year-olds who were born in St. Paul and faced each other as Little Leaguers.

“Good story,” Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said. “Two Minnesota kids.”

Both players were informed of their selection immediately following the Twins’ 6-0 victory over the Blue Jays on Saturday at Rogers Centre.

Mauer was the people’s choice to start for the fourth time in six All-Star selections. He is batting .314 with eight home runs and 30 RBI. He leads AL catchers in batting average, on-base percentage and on-base-plus-slugging percentage.

Perkins took over as Twins closer last summer and finished 2012 with 16 saves and a 2.56 ERA. He has taken off from there this season, converting 20 of 22 save opportunities while posting a 1.93 ERA. His 0.79 WHIP (walks and hits per innings pitched) entering Saturday was the lowest of any closer in baseball.

“Those guys are unbelievable,” Twins righthander Mike Pelfrey said. “I don’t think anybody is shocked. They’re obviously very deserving. Glen has been unbelievable and Joe is Joe. It’s fun to watch. You wish them the best and no one in here is surprised at all.”

Perkins’ played mental gymnastics right until he was told he was an All-Star. One minute he thought he was shoo-in. Then he would think about all the quality closers in the league and change his mind.

Then he learned that Leyland picked him for the team.

“When I go out there and pitch, it’s about the numbers and that stuff but it’s also about respecting the other team and the game,” Perkins said. “Having Jim Leyland managing the team is quite an honor. I’ve played against him for a long time. I know he chose me for the team, so I will be happy to thank him.”

Perkins, the former Gophers standout and a Twins first-round pick in 2004, is riding a wave that began during the preseason when he played for Team USA at the World Baseball Classic. Mauer, the first overall pick in 2001, is a Team USA veteran too, so Perkins picked the right teammate’s path to follow this season.

“It’s awesome,” Mauer said. “Everyone agrees that he is well-deserving, I’m very proud for him and we are going to have a lot of fun. It’s been really nice to see Glen to evolve into one of the best back end guys. Everyone in here knew he was one of the best bullpen guys and now everybody knows.

“It’s more fun when you have a teammate to share it with. I’ve always said as long as they keep having me I would love to go. It’s great, it’s exciting it and an honor. To bring a teammate for his first time, it’s a lot of fun.”

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions


Team Irvin 32 FINAL
Team Carter 28
Miami 96 FINAL
Chicago 84
Oklahoma City 98 FINAL
Cleveland 108
Dallas 106 FINAL
New Orleans 109
Indiana 106 FINAL
Orlando 99
LA Clippers 120 FINAL
Phoenix 100
Minnesota 100 FINAL
Atlanta 112
Detroit 110 FINAL
Toronto 114
Milwaukee 95 FINAL
San Antonio 101
Boston 111 FINAL
Golden State 114
Washington 117 FINAL
Denver 115
Houston 99 FINAL
LA Lakers 87
Team Toews 17 FINAL
Team Foligno 12
South Florida 53 FINAL
Connecticut 66
Boston College 64 FINAL
Georgia Tech 62
Virginia 50 FINAL
Virginia Tech 47
Indiana 70 FINAL
Ohio State 82
Stony Brook 61 FINAL
Binghamton 54
Cincinnati 56 FINAL
UCF 46
Maine 70 FINAL
Hartford 61
Monmouth 64 FINAL
Manhattan 71
Fairfield 67 FINAL
Marist 73
Rowan 48 FINAL
Princeton 96
St Bonaventure 48 FINAL
Rhode Island 53
Duke 77 FINAL
St Johns 68
Saint Peters 69 FINAL
Siena 55
Drake 40 FINAL
Wichita State 74
Vermont 61 FINAL
UMass Lowell 50
Seton Hall 57 FINAL
Butler 77
South Alabama 55
Northern Iowa 54 FINAL
Illinois State 53
Louisville 80 FINAL
Pittsburgh 68
Albany 69
Niagara 64 FINAL
Iona 87
Notre Dame 81 FINAL
NC State 78
Belmont 63 FINAL
Tennessee St 55
Creighton 50 FINAL
Villanova 71
Northwestern 67 FINAL
Maryland 68
Washington 56 FINAL
Utah 77
Senior-North 34 FINAL
Senior-South 13
Seton Hall 99 FINAL
Georgetown 85
St Johns 69 FINAL
Villanova 81
Arkansas 58 FINAL
Florida 72
Maine 56 FINAL
Vanderbilt 55 FINAL
Alabama 52
Lafayette 60 FINAL
Lehigh 65
SMU 57
Utah 51 FINAL
Washington 63
James Madison 73 FINAL
Coll of Charleston 53
Delaware 56 FINAL
Drexel 61
Hofstra 56 FINAL
William & Mary 57
Hartford 58 FINAL
Albany 82
Binghamton 54 FINAL
Stony Brook 67
Towson 63 FINAL
UNC-Wilmington 71
Wake Forest 80 FINAL
(17) Florida State 110
Georgia Tech 68 FINAL
Virginia 62
(22) Georgia 51 FINAL
(5) Tennessee 59
Drake 79 FINAL
Evansville 62
Iona 80 FINAL
Canisius 62
Fairfield 33 FINAL
Monmouth 59
Northwestern 75 FINAL
Penn State 76
Wisconsin 71 FINAL
Michigan State 77
Ohio State 79 FINAL
Purdue 71
Northern Iowa 57 FINAL
Indiana State 55
Butler 58 FINAL
Xavier 54
Creighton 93 FINAL
Marquette 75
Providence 42 FINAL
DePaul 90
Northeastern 77 FINAL
Elon 80
(2) Connecticut 96 FINAL
Cincinnati 31
Oregon 78 FINAL
Arizona 81
Bradley 46 FINAL
Loyola-Chicago 45
NC State 49 FINAL
(23) Syracuse 66
(7) Maryland 84 FINAL
Indiana 74
Illinois State 35 FINAL
Missouri State 58
Colorado 68 FINAL
Washington St 73
Tulane 45 FINAL
South Florida 64
(14) Kentucky 83 FINAL
Missouri 69
(9) Oregon State 68 FINAL
(13) Arizona State 57
Vermont 63 FINAL
UMass Lowell 72
Iowa State 58 FINAL
(8) Texas 57
Southern Ill 61 FINAL
Wichita State 80
(15) Duke 74 FINAL
(12) North Carolina 67
Miami-Florida 55 FINAL
(4) Louisville 68
(21) Minnesota 61 FINAL
(25) Rutgers 66
California 72 FINAL
(11) Stanford 71 FINAL
USC 60
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters





question of the day

Poll: How optimistic are you about the 2015 Twins?

Weekly Question