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Video: Mauer on Moving to 1B

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#1 John Bonnes

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Posted 13 November 2013 - 10:03 PM

Fox Sports North broadcast a video of Dick Bremer interviewing Joe Mauer about the move to 1B. It was good seeing him talk in person about it. He seemed very at peace with it based on his body language.

You can find the video here.

Bremer asked him about why he has always wanted to be a catcher. I found lots about his answer interesting:

"Being in charge. Having your teammates look at you to make plays and setting a good example for them and always hustling. That was always very appealing to me. I've always kind of been that in every sports I played. I was a point guard in basketball and a quarterback in football. So I always enjoyed being in that leadership type of role.

I played different positions growing up. I think when I got to high school, I kind of realized that would be the quickest way to the big leagues: a left-handed hitting catcher. That's kind of when I started to turn my focus to catching and really fell in love with it. "


1. I hadn't thought about how he always wanted that "captain on the field" position in all sports.
2. I find it interesting that he made an analysis in high school that led him towards catcher.
3. I love that he said he "fell in love" with being a catcher.

I think it's worth watching, just for the body language. A lot has been said about who drove this decision. I don't find any evidence that Mauer is not totally invested in this decision.

#2 Seth Stohs

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Posted 13 November 2013 - 10:21 PM

Because he's quiet and throws so many cliches out to the media, there is this perception that Mauer isn't a leader. I don't get that thinking, to be honest. When you are a catcher, you have to lead, and there's no question that he does. But it's right, he has been a leader in all of his sports.

#3 D. Hocking

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Posted 14 November 2013 - 07:59 AM

I don't think he is ever going to be overly vocal in the locker room, but from hearing Perkins and other pitchers over the year, it sounds he is very competitive over-all and has an intensity during the game. He may not be an extrovert, but I don't think he is as passive as his critics suggest.

Coomer and Atterberry have a hotstove show on KTWN Wednesday where they aired an interview that they did with him (probably the same time as Rosen and Fox Sports did theirs). He is sad to give up catching, but I think he is moving on and it sounds like he is working with the staff on making adjustments for his workouts and is planning on talking to Justin and other first basemen on what they do to keep their legs in shape during the season (since he will no longer get the 9 inning crouch workout). They also asked about base running, and he said he plans on doing more since he won't need to worry as much about his numb legs giving out. Regarding leadership, he did say he should be around more for the hitting meetings etc. In the past he has often been off with Anderson and the pitchers during the hitting meetings.

I know nice does not win games and his media persona could be an act and he could be the biggest jerk behind the scenes, but for someone who has been dubbed the golden boy since about age 14 and been treated as a star since age 20, he comes across pretty down to earth. I saw a comment after the announcement [not on this board] by someone calling him soft for giving up catching and criticizing him for milking his paternity leave and making up a phantom headache to get out of the rest of the season. Not that he is above criticism, but some people like to hold on to their Mauer hate. It would also be interesting to see a couple of those critics try to catch a MLB game and see how well they can tough it out.

#4 Thrylos

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Posted 14 November 2013 - 08:11 AM

Because he's quiet and throws so many cliches out to the media, there is this perception that Mauer isn't a leader. I don't get that thinking, to be honest. When you are a catcher, you have to lead, and there's no question that he does. But it's right, he has been a leader in all of his sports.



Here is the beef that I have with this:

A leader is as good as the results of the people who he leads. And I am not talking Ws and Ls here. The last 3 seasons this team looked dead on the field. They looked like they did not believe that they will win some games. Dejected and uninterested in the game, looks here and there in the dugouts etc.

I think that it is not Mauer's fault, it is Gardenhire's. But this team needs someone to lead them who cannot stand losing and makes sure than nobody in the team can stand losing. I don't know what is going on behind closed doors, but looking at the field and in the dugout, Mauer is not that kind of a leader.

Compare the Twins' dugout last season and with the Boston dugout last season. Could you tell by the behavior of players in the dugout, on the field and in the pen and their interest in the games, that Boston won only 3 more games than the Twins the previous season in 2012? No. THIS is leadership and is one thing that the Twins had in the WS years and severely lack now.

Edited by Thrylos, 14 November 2013 - 08:13 AM.

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#5 Riverbrian

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Posted 14 November 2013 - 08:24 AM

I fully admit that I have no idea what is happening in the dugout and club house. And I believe that Seth has some idea.

With that said... I agree with Thrylos here.

The team 2013 was visibly flat on many levels. I recognize it.

When I read that Joe is a quiet leader. It fits with what my eyes are seeing so I can go along with it.

I could be wrong because I really have no way of gaining direct knowledge.
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#6 cmathewson

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Posted 14 November 2013 - 08:39 AM

Here is the beef that I have with this:

A leader is as good as the results of the people who he leads. And I am not talking Ws and Ls here. The last 3 seasons this team looked dead on the field. They looked like they did not believe that they will win some games. Dejected and uninterested in the game, looks here and there in the dugouts etc.

I think that it is not Mauer's fault, it is Gardenhire's. But this team needs someone to lead them who cannot stand losing and makes sure than nobody in the team can stand losing. I don't know what is going on behind closed doors, but looking at the field and in the dugout, Mauer is not that kind of a leader.

Compare the Twins' dugout last season and with the Boston dugout last season. Could you tell by the behavior of players in the dugout, on the field and in the pen and their interest in the games, that Boston won only 3 more games than the Twins the previous season in 2012? No. THIS is leadership and is one thing that the Twins had in the WS years and severely lack now.


That starts with a couple of guys who can get people out into the seventh inning consistently. Puck was a leader, but he couldn't throw the ball over the plate.
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#7 JB_Iowa

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Posted 14 November 2013 - 08:46 AM

There are different kinds of leadership and I firmly believe that the team needs more than one kind.

I have no doubt that Joe Mauer leads by his professionalism and work ethic. But I don't think he wants to be -- nor should he have to be -- a vocal leader who is willing to call out bad behavior, enthusiastically encourage and cajole or kick butt when necessary.

The problem is that the team seems to shy away from the more vocal types. I remember a story a few years ago when Gardenhire was talking about Mauer and Morneau and mentioned something about Morny coming in and putting money on his desk because he was fining himself for some minor infraction. That's great but its pretty unrealistic to think that most players will be like that.

Mauer is a great example of a true professional but the team also needs someone who can be a vocal leader. And, in my opinion, it also needs someone who can be a bit of a clown or entertainer and relieve the boredom and tension of a long season (a la Mike Redmond or a bit of Cuddy).

As for Mauer's decision, life changes you. He's not the same boy he was 10 years ago or the same man he was even 3 years ago. He'll be able to take his intense focus and apply it 1B.