Thank Goodness for Joe Mauer

I should preface this entry with an apology — I’m sorry. I’m sorry for writing about baseball. I promise not to turn this into a baseball blog again, but what I have to write this evening just had to be written.

Did you see the Yankees–Red Sox game tonight or catch the highlights? Seeing Victor Martinez and Jorge Posada in action just makes me as a Twins fan appreciate Joe Mauer that much more and highlights so many of the reasons why the Twins were willing to make Mauer the 284-Million-Dollar Man.

Take, for example, Martinez’s decision to attempt to throw out Derek Jeter at second, down 4–1, and with Brett Gardner on third. What the f—— was he thinking? Did he even look at Gardner at third? Clearly not. As if his decision to even attempt to throw out Jeter at second weren’t bad enough, worse still was the throw itself. I could make a better throw to second than that, and I’ve never seen anyone in my life less capable of making an accurate throw than me.

And how about Mr. Passed Ball — Jorge Posada. He, of course, being among the top-ten all-time in modern baseball history in passed balls. Unlike most of the other catchers on that list, our Mr. Posada has never caught a knucklerballer — he’s just an awful, awful defensive catcher whose pathetic defense has been ignored because he averages 25 HR / 98 RBIs / .277 AVG. He had yet another passed ball tonight that conceded the winning run. Poor Chan Ho Park got charged with the loss, but the loss should really go to Posada.

(And, unlike Mauer, who has won three batting titles — and last year also lead the league in slugging percentage and on-base percentage — the only offensive category Posada has ever lead the league in is Double Plays Grounded Into.)

I guess all I mean to say is that seeing Posada and Martinez play makes you appreciate Mauer and what he gives the Twins that much more. Even with their outsized payrolls, that's the best the Yankees and Red Sox can get for catchers. If Mauer had tested the open market after this season, his annual salary might well have challenged that of Alex Rodriguez, but by accepting “only” $23 million per year to stay with the Twins he̵ll instead be filling the heads of New Yorkers and Bostonians with dreams of what could have been.

Thanks Joe for staying home.


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This page contains a single entry by Kris published on April 5, 2010 12:10 AM.

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