Posted 13 April 2018 - 07:13 PM
Always been a Mauer fan, and never a hater. Never got down on him or blamed him for his injuries. Disappointed sure, but never down on him. To be fully transparent, at one time I thought he was done and should probably retire. His re-surgance has been a great story! As is this article!
I have been frustrated at times for the lack of power for someone to big and naturally athletic, especially when I saw a ball right down the middle he let go by. (Usually followed by lacing a single somewhere or coaxing a BB). But his career and contributions as an outstanding hitter and defender, both behind the plate and at 1B, should never be discounted simply because he has never been a hulking power hitter.
I spent a lot of years watching guys like Wally Joyner, Mark Grace and Keith Hernandez play 1B and contribute to their teams in so many ways despite not being the classic, slugging 1B. Add in what Joe accomplished as maybe the best pure hitting catcher of all time, and you have a ballplayer who's real greatness may be diminished, somewhat, only by unreal expectations placed on him.
I truly hope he repeats what he did last season...and his early start is greatly encouraging this year...and does it for another couple of years to cement his place as one of the greatest Twins ever.
"Nice catch Hayes...don't ever f*****g do it again."