Jump to content

Providing independent coverage of the Minnesota Twins.
Subscribe to Twins Daily Email

The Store

Photo

Time for Mauer to Smell the Coffee

  • Please log in to reply
62 replies to this topic

#1 mudcat14

mudcat14

    Senior Member

  • Members
  • 147 posts

Posted 20 April 2014 - 07:57 AM

Whether it's due to age, wear or whatever, Joe's quick reactions and batspeed are slowing down. Since even before the concussion, his K rate has been climbing steadily over the past three years, to an all-time worst. It's time he give up the fantasy of being Rod Carew and embrace the fact that he's Kent Hrbek. A .320 singles hitter with gap power had great value at catcher, but at 1B he's worth a lot more as a .290 hitting lumbering slugger. He's 6'5' & 230 for Chrissake! The time has come to stop waiting back on every pitch and flicking them the other way. He needs to start aggressively attacking the first good pitch he see's, and fulfill his destiny.

#2 Winston Smith

Winston Smith

    Old Geezer

  • Members
  • 1,350 posts
  • LocationOceania

Posted 20 April 2014 - 08:20 AM

watch out!
Posted Image
This comment brought to you from the Rosedale Mall studio by Hamm's Beer, brewed in the land of sky blue waters.

#3 darin617

darin617

    Senior Member

  • Members
  • 605 posts

Posted 20 April 2014 - 08:35 AM

Whether it's due to age, wear or whatever, Joe's quick reactions and batspeed are slowing down. Since even before the concussion, his K rate has been climbing steadily over the past three years, to an all-time worst. It's time he give up the fantasy of being Rod Carew and embrace the fact that he's Kent Hrbek. A .320 singles hitter with gap power had great value at catcher, but at 1B he's worth a lot more as a .290 hitting lumbering slugger. He's 6'5' & 230 for Chrissake! The time has come to stop waiting back on every pitch and flicking them the other way. He needs to start aggressively attacking the first good pitch he see's, and fulfill his destiny.


He is not Kent Hrbek or anything close to that. What he is would be better described as Doug Mientkiewicz but not as good as glove.

#4 BHtwins

BHtwins

    Member

  • Members
  • 79 posts

Posted 20 April 2014 - 09:03 AM

Let's see....

Joe Mauer career .871 OPS
Doug M Career .760 OPS

Yeah...about the same...

#5 ChiTownTwinsFan

ChiTownTwinsFan

    Queen.

  • Twins Moderators
  • 5,252 posts
  • LocationChiTown, where else?

Posted 20 April 2014 - 09:06 AM

We've had this discussion before. Is there something new to bring to the table that's happened since last week?

Edited by ChiTownTwinsFan, 20 April 2014 - 10:45 AM.

When life gives you lemons, suck on them and persevere.

#6 Old Twins Cap

Old Twins Cap

    Senior Member

  • Members
  • 127 posts

Posted 20 April 2014 - 09:23 AM

Definitely needs some time at 1B to learn the position. Could have and should have saved a run the other day on a grounder with the bases loaded. As a hitter, he is what he is. Remember the Twins signed him the year after he hit 27 HRs at the Metrodome in an injury shortened season. But, it is galling to have your 3-hole hitter bunting, and a natural 1B like Colabello playing RF. Not sure there is a good answer except, once again, the Twins find a way to lose their way in fielding a decent squad.

#7 TopGunn#22

TopGunn#22

    Member

  • Members
  • 62 posts

Posted 20 April 2014 - 09:31 AM

He is not Kent Hrbek or anything close to that. What he is would be better described as Doug Mientkiewicz but not as good as glove.


First, I want to state that I have always been a Joe Mauer fan and always will be. My frustration with him stems from his mental approach at the plate. #3 hitters are supposed to drive in runs. Puckett did, Oliva did, etc... Joe Mauer has hit #3 in the Twins lineup for virtually his entire career. Lately he's seen some time in the 2-hole. If he never changes his approach, he should stay in the 2-hole. In a recent game, Mauer was up with runners on 1st and 3rd with 2 out. Dozier promptly stole 2nd base leaving first base open. The team the Twins were playing elected to pitch to Joe. The count was 2-0. Here comes a fastball, middle in (a pitch a hitter with the mentality and approach to drive in runs would have come out of his socks to hit). Joe took strike one. After a ball outside, here came another fastball on the outside edge, not as good a pitch to hit as strike one, but still a pitch Mauer knocks to leftfield for a base hit. Choosey Joe takes strike two. Finally, ball four arrives outside off the plate, and Joe takes his walk to fill the bases, leaving the RBI work to "the next guy." Joe has never had a RBI guys approach. I can see Carew taking the walk in 1969-1971 with Tony Oliva hitting behind him. But the 2014 version of the Minnesota Twins don't have a Tony Oliva. Joe Mauer must adjust his approach from "Choosey Joe" with men in scoring postion to "Aggressive Joe, I want to drive those #$#*@# teammates of mine home!!!

#8 Marta Shearing

Marta Shearing

    Senior Member

  • Members
  • 417 posts

Posted 20 April 2014 - 09:52 AM

Spot on Top Gun. How could anyone debate this? Take take take take take.

#9 Joe A. Preusser

Joe A. Preusser

    Senior Member

  • Members
  • 723 posts

Posted 20 April 2014 - 09:53 AM

Mauer is as close a player to Meink as I am.

Edited by ChiTownTwinsFan, 20 April 2014 - 09:57 AM.


#10 blindeke

blindeke

    Member

  • Members
  • 95 posts

Posted 20 April 2014 - 10:23 AM

Well he is striking out a lot more. Maybe we can just talk about that.

#11 Brock Beauchamp

Brock Beauchamp

    Owner

  • Administrators
  • 8,527 posts

Posted 20 April 2014 - 10:38 AM

Mauer has a career .322 BA and .467 SLG.

Mauer has a career .333 BA and .480 SLG with RISP.

Mauer has a career .336 BA and .469 SLG with men on base.

But hey, let's not let facts get in the way of a good argument.

#12 Guest_USAFChief_*

Guest_USAFChief_*
  • Guests

Posted 20 April 2014 - 10:43 AM

Mauer has a career .322 BA and .467 SLG.

Mauer has a career .333 BA and .480 SLG with RISP.

Mauer has a career .336 BA and .469 SLG with men on base.

But hey, let's not let facts get in the way of a good argument.


IMO none of those facts dispute the theory the Twins would be better off if Mauer looked for ways to be a more dangerous hitter at certain points.

#13 Brock Beauchamp

Brock Beauchamp

    Owner

  • Administrators
  • 8,527 posts

Posted 20 April 2014 - 10:58 AM

IMO none of those facts dispute the theory the Twins would be better off if Mauer looked for ways to be a more dangerous hitter at certain points.


I don't think it's that easy. You're talking about completely altering a guy's approach to the plate.

We have no idea what kind of results would come from altering that approach. Would it help the Twins? Possibly. Are we guaranteed that the results would improve his output? Absolutely not.

#14 CRArko

CRArko

    Prestidigitator

  • Members
  • 1,268 posts

Posted 20 April 2014 - 11:00 AM

IMO none of those facts dispute the theory the Twins would be better off if Mauer looked for ways to be a more dangerous hitter at certain points.


Every team would be better off if each of its hitters did more. Maybe something can be written into the next CBA to enforce that.

#15 mudcat14

mudcat14

    Senior Member

  • Members
  • 147 posts

Posted 20 April 2014 - 01:49 PM

We've had this discussion before. Is there something new to bring to the table that's happened since last week?


Since last week? No. But over the past couple of years? Yes. His K rate has risen dramatically. He now plays a much less rigorous position defensively, supposedly allowing him to maintain his energy. He's in the line-up every single day. He's being pitched inside, almost exclusively. Many teams put their SS directly behind the bag for him, even though they know he prefers to hit the opposite way.


Bottom line he's still an athlete with superior hand/eye coordination and above average pitch recognition. But he needs to evolve into his body, position and opportunities that are afforded to him. Not unlike a Little Leaguer who has to make adjustments to keep his eye on the ball or not step in the bucket, Joe has to want to condition himself to use his vast talents in a more productive way. Doug Mientkiewicz never made $22mil/year.

#16 pierre75275

pierre75275

    Senior Member

  • Members
  • 279 posts

Posted 20 April 2014 - 04:11 PM

I think what is going on here is that everybody who sick of mauer walking in situations where he could drive in runs are being met by folks equally sick of reading about it on a daily basis. It might be time to change the channel for a while

#17 drock2190

drock2190

    Senior Member

  • Members
  • 215 posts

Posted 20 April 2014 - 04:40 PM

I know its small sample size and all but his numbers are trending the wrong way.

Whether its lingering effects of the concussion or he's on the wrong side of his prime, hes not the valuable hitter he once was. So plucking stats from his past aren't the best, because it does not predict future success.

But he is still a good player and hes home-grown.

#18 Brock Beauchamp

Brock Beauchamp

    Owner

  • Administrators
  • 8,527 posts

Posted 20 April 2014 - 05:41 PM

I know its small sample size and all but his numbers are trending the wrong way.

Whether its lingering effects of the concussion or he's on the wrong side of his prime, hes not the valuable hitter he once was. So plucking stats from his past aren't the best, because it does not predict future success.


It's going to take more than three weeks of mediocre play for me to get worried about Mauer.

Yeah, his strikeouts were trending the wrong way last year... Though that's not necessarily a bad thing in a vacuum.

Give it time. If it's June 1 and he's still struggling, then it's time to get worried. 17 games in April don't tell us much about his future.

#19 stringer bell

stringer bell

    No Speed, Warning Track Power

  • Twins News Team
  • 3,670 posts

Posted 20 April 2014 - 05:46 PM

Pretty much agree with Brock, above. However, for whatever reason, it may be time for Mauer to adjust a bit. He is notorious for taking the first pitch, he refuses to expand his zone, no matter what the game situation, and he doesn't often pull the ball with authority. Some tweaks may be in order to improve an already outstanding hitter.

#20 Jdosen

Jdosen

    Senior Member

  • Members
  • 118 posts

Posted 20 April 2014 - 07:00 PM

But, it is galling to have your 3-hole hitter bunting, and a natural 1B like Colabello playing RF.


My response to your saying it's "galling" for him to bunt: On that play I believe the Royals were using a slight shift towards right field, with the third baseman playing a few paces towards 2nd more than he would usually and back. I have no problem with Mauer taking a free (!!!) base by getting a bunt down in the direction of a 3B who is not in position to field one, especially with the bases empty as they were (he was leading off). It would be more troubling if it were 2011 again and he bunted with RISP, but it isn't.

My response to Colabello in RF: I mentioned to my dad this weekend as we watched Colabello tip toe around RF (we were in KC for the series) that if I ran the Twins I would consider putting Mauer in RF and Colabello at 1B when neither are the DH, as I feel Mauer's athleticism would make a better fielder in right than Colabello. I wish they were more willing to use Mauer in a role that had him playing in the outfield corners as well as 1B.
I just started the blog Troy Williamson's Hands which is about MN sports and whatever else I want to write--you can find it at http://troywilliamso...s.blogspot.com/
twitter: @dose17

#21 DocBauer

DocBauer

    Senior Member

  • Members
  • 511 posts

Posted 20 April 2014 - 07:16 PM

Mauer has a career .322 BA and .467 SLG.

Mauer has a career .333 BA and .480 SLG with RISP.

Mauer has a career .336 BA and .469 SLG with men on base.

But hey, let's not let facts get in the way of a good argument.


Thank you. Thank you. Thank you Brock.

You have done nothing here but prove points I've made myself before.

We all see a big strapping athlete and many have wondered why he can't just be a consistent 28-30+ HR hitter and be done with it. But it's not that simple. Boggs once concentrated on power alone and saw his other numbers drop. Same with Gwynn. Two of the greatest hitters of their generations. Mauer is a pure hitter, something that doesn't come along every day. His natural approach and stroke is to swing at good pitches, ignore bad ones, take a walk when it's there, and hit line drives all over the field. With any kind of decent hitters ahead of him, and behind, he will hit .300+ with an OB of .400+ with 40+ doubles and double digit HR totals. Out from behind the plate now, stronger and healthier for a whole season and 150 games played the HR totals may climb to 15-18 and maybe 20.

What team wouldn't kill for a bat like that in their lineup?

Mauer's biggest problem has been unreal expectations and the lineup around him the past few seasons, whether due to injury or talent level.

Gardy has him hitting 2 in the lineup for current reasons that I understand. But Brock's numbers show very clearly why I believe his best and most productive spot in the lineup is in the 3 hole. I hope over the course of player development/production this season and next we'll see that happen again.

#22 Willihammer

Willihammer

    ice cream correspondent

  • Members
  • 2,823 posts
  • LocationSaint Paul

Posted 20 April 2014 - 07:28 PM

In a recent game, Mauer was up with runners on 1st and 3rd with 2 out. Dozier promptly stole 2nd base leaving first base open. The team the Twins were playing elected to pitch to Joe. The count was 2-0. Here comes a fastball, middle in (a pitch a hitter with the mentality and approach to drive in runs would have come out of his socks to hit). Joe took strike one. After a ball outside, here came another fastball on the outside edge, not as good a pitch to hit as strike one, but still a pitch Mauer knocks to leftfield for a base hit. Choosey Joe takes strike two. Finally, ball four arrives outside off the plate, and Joe takes his walk to fill the bases, leaving the RBI work to "the next guy."


Ok, if you want to grill Mauer on this particular at-bat let's get into it.

What game was it?
What was the score?
what was the inning?

#23 cmathewson

cmathewson

    Senior Member

  • Members
  • 2,273 posts

Posted 20 April 2014 - 07:29 PM

I am worried about the strikeouts. I'm worried that he's not as mentally fresh as he was before the concussion. I don't think he should try to do anything different. But maybe he's lost something since the concussion.
"If you'da been thinkin' you wouldn't 'a thought that.."

#24 cmathewson

cmathewson

    Senior Member

  • Members
  • 2,273 posts

Posted 20 April 2014 - 07:32 PM

Ok, if you want to grill Mauer on this particular at-bat let's get into it.

What game was it?
What was the score?
what was the inning?


It was the last extra inning game against Oakland. The Twins were down by three runs with two outs. They needed base runners. If I recall correctly, Dozier ran on the 2-0 pitch. They gave him one more strike on the outside edge and the other pitches were well off the plate. Anybody who criticizes that at bat doesn't understand the game.
"If you'da been thinkin' you wouldn't 'a thought that.."

#25 SweetOne69

SweetOne69

    Senior Member

  • Members
  • 449 posts

Posted 20 April 2014 - 07:35 PM

It may be just me, but it appears that Mauer is standing further away from the plate this year than in the past. Maybe that is why he not only strikes out looking on pitches on the outside corner but he argues the call.

#26 Halsey Hall

Halsey Hall

    Senior Member

  • Members
  • 749 posts

Posted 20 April 2014 - 07:37 PM

Mauer swung at a first pitch strike today. Time for some of us to smell the roses.

#27 Willihammer

Willihammer

    ice cream correspondent

  • Members
  • 2,823 posts
  • LocationSaint Paul

Posted 20 April 2014 - 07:44 PM

It was the last extra inning game against Oakland. The Twins were down by three runs with two outs. They needed base runners. If I recall correctly, Dozier ran on the 2-0 pitch. They gave him one more strike on the outside edge and the other pitches were well off the plate. Anybody who criticizes that at bat doesn't understand the game.


Ok so this game?

http://www.baseball-...201404090.shtml

[TABLE="class: sortable stats_table"]
[TR="class: partial_table black_text bold_text shade_text"]
[TD="colspan: 12, align: left"]Bottom of the 11th, Twins Batting, Behind 4-7, Athletics' Dan Otero facing 7-8-9 [/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD="align: right"]b11[/TD]
[TD="align: right"]4-7[/TD]
[TD="align: right"]0[/TD]
[TD="align: right"]---[/TD]
[TD="align: left"]4,(2-1) [/TD]
[TD="align: left"][/TD]
[TD="align: right"]MIN[/TD]
[TD="align: left"]C. Herrmann[/TD]
[TD="align: left"]D. Otero[/TD]
[TD="align: right"]-4%[/TD]
[TD="align: right"]92%[/TD]
[TD="align: left"]Single to RF (Ground Ball thru 2B-1B)[/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD="align: right"]b11[/TD]
[TD="align: right"]4-7[/TD]
[TD="align: right"]0[/TD]
[TD="align: right"]1--[/TD]
[TD="align: left"]2,(0-1) [/TD]
[TD="align: left"]O[/TD]
[TD="align: right"]MIN[/TD]
[TD="align: left"]A. Hicks[/TD]
[TD="align: left"]D. Otero[/TD]
[TD="align: right"]4%[/TD]
[TD="align: right"]96%[/TD]
[TD="align: left"]Groundout: 1B-SS/Forceout at 2B (Weak 2B-1B)[/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD="align: right"]b11[/TD]
[TD="align: right"]4-7[/TD]
[TD="align: right"]1[/TD]
[TD="align: right"]1--[/TD]
[TD="align: left"]4,(0-2) [/TD]
[TD="align: left"][/TD]
[TD="align: right"]MIN[/TD]
[TD="align: left"]E. Escobar[/TD]
[TD="align: left"]D. Otero[/TD]
[TD="align: right"]-6%[/TD]
[TD="align: right"]90%[/TD]
[TD="align: left"]Single to LF (Fly Ball to LF-CF); Hicks to 2B[/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD="align: right"]b11[/TD]
[TD="align: right"]4-7[/TD]
[TD="align: right"]1[/TD]
[TD="align: right"]12-[/TD]
[TD="align: left"]4,(1-2) [/TD]
[TD="align: left"]O[/TD]
[TD="align: right"]MIN[/TD]
[TD="align: left"]B. Dozier[/TD]
[TD="align: left"]D. Otero[/TD]
[TD="align: right"]6%[/TD]
[TD="align: right"]96%[/TD]
[TD="align: left"]Strikeout Swinging[/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD="align: right"]b11[/TD]
[TD="align: right"]4-7[/TD]
[TD="align: right"]2[/TD]
[TD="align: right"]12-[/TD]
[TD="align: left"]6,(3-2) [/TD]
[TD="align: left"][/TD]
[TD="align: right"]MIN[/TD]
[TD="align: left"]J. Mauer[/TD]
[TD="align: left"]D. Otero[/TD]
[TD="align: right"]-5%[/TD]
[TD="align: right"]91%[/TD]
[TD="align: left"]Walk; Hicks to 3B; Escobar to 2B[/TD]
[/TR]
[TR]
[TD="align: right"]b11[/TD]
[TD="align: right"]4-7[/TD]
[TD="align: right"]2[/TD]
[TD="align: right"]123[/TD]
[TD="align: left"]1,(0-0) [/TD]
[TD="align: left"]O[/TD]
[TD="align: right"]MIN[/TD]
[TD="align: left"]T. Plouffe[/TD]
[TD="align: left"]D. Otero[/TD]
[TD="align: right"]9%[/TD]
[TD="align: right"]100%[/TD]
[TD="align: left"]Lineout: 3B (SS-3B Hole)[/TD]
[/TR]
[/TABLE]



Yup, I'd say Mauer handled that perfectly.

#28 Deduno Abides

Deduno Abides

    Member

  • Members
  • 81 posts

Posted 20 April 2014 - 08:44 PM

Pedroia is hitting .250 with no HR. Chris Davis is hitting .241 with one HR. Cano is hitting .268 with one HR. It's a little early to panic about Mauer. His year-end statistics will likely be much better than his current statistics and he will probably seem to be driving the offense at various times this year. That said, the strike-outs and swinging strikes are concerns. Whether they are a blip or an early indication of age-related decline is hard to know.
"Where's the Crede?"

#29 MichiganTwins

MichiganTwins

    Senior Member

  • Members
  • 344 posts

Posted 20 April 2014 - 09:13 PM

Gosh, Why doesnt Mauer play Shortstop? Doesnt he see our shortstops cant hit? WHy doesnt he tell Gardy that I am playing shortstop today and I am going to hit three homers each hitting the pole.......Come one guys, seriously lets wait this out. Personally, I think he might be in the middle of an adjustment from not being catcher and knowing the umps strike zone as well as he might if he were catching. Joe is going to be fine. Maybe we should worry about other players rather than hate our best player.

#30 darin617

darin617

    Senior Member

  • Members
  • 605 posts

Posted 20 April 2014 - 09:50 PM

Spot on Top Gun. How could anyone debate this? Take take take take take.


Exactly, a complete coward when it counts. How many times in close games with RISP does Mauer draw a walk and leave it up to the next hitter. And I don't just mean this season.