The Cubs didn’t have any players elected to the starting team for the National League for this year’s All-Star Game in Denver, but Sunday it was announced they’d have two reserves, one hitter and one pitcher.
Kris Bryant got off to a great start this year and was one of three finalists in All-Star balloting, but Nolan Arenado was elected to start the game at third base.
KB, who’s played five different positions (third base, first base and all three outfield spots) this season, had a rough June but has had a couple of good games since the calendar turned to July and is now hitting .272/.355/.511 (75-for-246) with 16 home runs.
Presuming he gets into the game — and I suspect he will — I’ll bet it will be at third base. For Bryant, it’s his fourth All-Star selection.
Cubs closer Craig Kimbrel was also named to the NL All-Star team. Kimbrel is having what is likely going to be the best year of his career, if he keeps up his current paces. In 32 appearances covering 30⅔ innings, Kimbrel has an 0.59 ERA (two earned runs) and 0.652 WHIP. He’s allowed just 10 hits and 10 walks, and just one home run. He’s faced 113 batters and struck out 53 of them, 46.9 percent. He has 20 saves in 22 opportunities. It’s his eighth All-Star selection.
Congratulations to Bryant and Kimbrel; look forward to seeing them in Denver July 13.