DETROIT -- It's not under the best of circumstances, but Miguel Cabrera will start in place of the Twins' Justin Morneau at first base for the American League in the All-Star Game on Tuesday.
Morneau suffered a mild concussion on Wednesday, and after being evaluated by doctors in Detroit, decided to withdraw from the Midsummer Classic. Morneau missed three straight games before leaving Detroit on Saturday to return to Minnesota for further evaluations, thus missing Sunday's series finale, as well.
Cabrera was announced as the starter in Morneau's place on Saturday after the Tigers defeated the Twins, 7-4, to lock up the series victory. Morneau edged Cabrera in the fan voting, despite a late push by the Tigers slugger. White Sox first baseman Paul Konerko replaced Morneau on the AL roster.
"If I don't play here, I'm not going to go there," Morneau said before Saturday's game. "Obviously, if I can't play for my team, I'm not going to fly out there and run around for two days."
Although Cabrera is excited for his first start in five appearances at the All-Star Game, he wishes it could have come under better circumstances.
"Who wouldn't like being in the All-Star Game starting?" Cabrera said. "But the way that it happens with somebody hurt, I think that's not the right way, because he deserves to be starting. The people voted for him and he won the fan vote. People want to see him. Everybody feels bad for him, because he can't go because he is hurt. I will not feel happy because somebody is hurt."
Cabrera hit a two-run homer in the first inning of Tuesday's win against the Twins to extend his hitting streak to a career-high 18 games. He will be the first Tigers player to start in the All-Star Game since 2007.
"Justin was voted in and obviously that's a great thing," Tigers manager Jim Leyland said. "But certainly, I'd have to say that's a pretty good replacement."