A few hundred million bucks’ worth of baseball players are headed to the Twin Cities for Tuesday’s Major League Baseball All Star Game at our very own Target Field. Sadly, none of the Minnesota Twins are getting there through the fan vote, which sets the game’s starting lineup. But fear not: The event’s rules are a bit like summer camp, so every team gets to send at least one player, who may or may not receive a participation medal and a juice box.
The Twins’ entrants this year are catcher Kurt Suzuki — who got the nod over the injured (again, sigh) Joe Mauer — and relief pitcher Glen Perkins. Here’s what you need to know about the guys who are set to start for the respective leagues.
Catcher: Salvador Perez, Kansas City Royals
The 24-year-old suffered a concussion after taking a ball to the face mask last year, and has since tried out an old-school catcher’s mask made out of solid steel bars.
First base: Miguel Cabrera, Detroit Tigers
Miggy’s move from third base is bad news for the rest of the league’s first basemen, who will probably have to wait until the two-time MVP retires to get a crack at the All Star nod.
Second base: Robinson Cano, Seattle Mariners
Cano’s father, who played a handful of major league games himself, named this former Yankee after color-barrier breaker Jackie Robinson.
Third base: Josh Donaldson, Oakland A’s
Went through an inexplicable 0-for-32 slump this season, but he’s earned this spot with his remarkable defensive prowess.
Shortstop: Derek Jeter, New York Yankees
Consider this an early retirement present for Jeter, who’s leaving the game after this season and probably doesn’t deserve the start over his younger, less handsome competitors.
Outfield: Jose Bautista, Toronto Blue Jays
After a few middling years, Bautista suddenly turned into one of the game’s best power hitters, and is better at getting on base than any other player this season.
Outfield: Mike Trout, Los Angeles Angels
The 22-year-old phenom is basically Mickey Mantle reincarnate. Last month he hit a home run in Kansas City that should have required a passport.
Outfield: Adam Jones, Baltimore Orioles
Like Popeye’s Chicken? Not as much as Jones: Last summer, he celebrated his 28th birthday with a novelty cake modeled after an order of the “Cajun Classic Choice.”
Designated hitter: Nelson Cruz, Baltimore Orioles
On the comeback from his involvement in a 2013 performance-enhancing drug scandal, Cruz is tied for the AL lead with 27 home runs this year.
Catcher: Yadier Molina, St. Louis Cardinals
Yadi is the most talented of the three baseball-playing Molina brothers, the first such trio in the majors since the mid-’70s.
First base: Paul Goldschmidt, Arizona Diamondbacks
Continued to take online college classes even after joining the big leagues, and earned his degree in management during the 2013 season.
Second base: Chase Utley, Philadelphia Phillies
The lone bright spot on the otherwise lousy Phillies. Could wind up traded to a contender later this season.
Third base: Aramis Ramirez, Milwaukee Brewers
So great he nearly got the Chicago Cubs to the World Series. He’ll have a better shot with the red-hot and not cursed Brew Crew.
Shortstop: Troy Tulowitzki, Colorado Rockies
Accused of stealing signs against the San Francisco Giants, he changed his walk-up music to the ’90s hit “I Saw the Sign” by Ace of Base.
Outfield: Andrew McCutchen, Pittsburgh Pirates
The reigning NL MVP was the key figure in breaking the Pirates’ streak of 20 straight seasons with a losing record.
Outfield: Carlos Gomez, Milwaukee Brewers
His reactions to big hits are so off-putting that he has caused two different bench-clearing brawls in as many years.
Outfield: Yasiel Puig, Los Angeles Dodgers
Movie rights to the incredible story of his escape from Cuba (Castro! Mexican gangsters! Santeria!) have already been scooped up — unfortunately, the successful buyer was Brett Ratner.
MLB ALL-STAR WEEK EVENTS
FanFest: 9 a.m.-8 p.m. Thu.-Mon., 9 a.m.-6 p.m. Tue., Minneapolis Convention Center, $25-$35.
All-Star Concert: With Imagine Dragons and Atmosphere. 7:30 p.m. Sat., TCF Bank Stadium, sold out.
Futures Game & Celebrity Softball Game: 4 & 7:30 p.m. Sun., Target Field, $20.
Home Run Derby: 7 p.m. Mon., Target Field, $175-$185. TV: ESPN.
All-Star Game: 6:30 p.m. Tue., Target Field, sold out. TV: Fox.