Blue Jays’ Kirk, Guerrero Jr. starts in All-Star Game

Toronto Blue Jays catcher Alejandro Kirk and first baseman Vladimir Guerrero Jr. have earned starting spots for the American League at the All-Star Game.

The starters, chosen by fan vote, were announced Friday night.

Six Blue Jays advanced to the second phase of fan voting (the top two in every position and the top five outfielders) — which closed earlier Friday. George Springer and Lourdes Gurriel Jr. finished fourth and fifth among the outfielders respectively, Santiago Espinal was second to Jose Altuve of the Houston Astros in the race at second base, while Bo Bichette was second to Tim Anderson of the Chicago White Sox at shortstop.

Only two second-stage outfielders have earned places as the best first-stage unopposed catch — New York Yankees outfielder Aaron Judge — already earned a berth.

Springer just missed, 20 percent of the vote, two percentage points behind Giancarlo Stanton of the Yankees.

Kirk got a whopping 74 percent of the vote against Jose Trevino of the Yankees, while Guerrero had 66 percent of the vote against Ty France of the Seattle Mariners.

Pitchers and reserves will be announced on Sunday. They are determined by the voting choices of the players and the office of the commissioner.

Blue Jays ace Alek Manoah and closer Jordan Romano have a shot at a spot.

Guerrero will advance to the All-Star Game for the second year in a row, while Kirk will make his midsummer classic debut.

‚ÄúVery emotional, for me and my whole family. We’re very, very close and we still can’t believe it,” Kirk said ahead of Friday’s game in Seattle.

Kirk slash .312/.399/.491 with 10 homers and 33 RBI, while Guerrero is at .268/.350/.490 with 19 homers and 54 RBI.

The All-Star Game is on July 19 at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles.

Toronto’s record for players in an All-Star Game is seven in 1993.

2022 All-Star Game Starters

American league

C: Alejandro Kirk (Toronto Blue Jays)
1B: Vladimir Guerrero Jr. (Toronto Blue Jays)
2B: Jose Altuve (Houston Astros)
3B: Rafael Devers (Boston Red Sox)
SS: Tim Anderson (Chicago White Sox)
OR: Aaron Judge (New York Yankees), Giancarlo Stanton (New York Yankees), Mike Trout (Los Angeles Angels)
DH: Shohei Ohtani (Los Angeles Angels)

National League

C: Willson Contreras (Chicago Cubs)
1B: Paul Goldschmidt (St. Louis Cardinals)
2B: Jazz Chisholm Jr. (Miami Marlins)
3B: Manny Machado (San Diego Padres)
SS: Trea Turner (Los Angeles Dodgers)
FROM: Ronald Coin Jr. (Atlanta Braves), Mookie Betts (Los Angeles Dodgers), Joc Pederson (San Francisco Giants).
DH: Bryce Harper (Philadelphia Phillies)

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