KANSAS CITY -- Nelson Cruz took a seven-game hitting streak into Tuesday's game with the Royals. Cruz was 11-for-24 (.458) in the streak to raise his batting average from .297 to .337. That would rank seventh in the AL in hitting but, because he missed two weeks with a strained hamstring, he is about 20 plate appearances shy of being listed among the qualifiers. He is still tied for 12th with nine home runs and tied for seventh with 33 RBIs. Fans are noticing his play because Cruz was third among American League outfielders in the first All-Star voting update released on Monday. Cruz trails only Ichiro Suzuki and Carl Crawford, putting him to be in position -- if this keeps up -- in the starting outfield for the All-Star Game in July.
"That would be awesome," Cruz said. "Fans are recognizing the job I am doing, that's something you appreciate." Cruz was also named the American League Player of the Week on Monday. In addition to hitting in seven straight games, Cruz had five doubles, two home runs and 12 RBIs.
"Last week at home was the best I've felt at the plate all year," Cruz said.