Blog Entry

Amid criticism, Mauer to alter offseason training

Posted on: August 28, 2011 12:27 pm
Edited on: August 28, 2011 12:31 pm
 
By Matt Snyder

The 2011 season has been as forgettable as one can possibly imagine for Joe Mauer. The four-time All-Star and 2009 AL MVP is hitting just .287 with basically no power -- his .349 slugging percentage is worse than Alexi Casilla's, for example. Mauer has missed 62 games, and the worst part is this has caused questions about his toughness. He didn't break or pull anything, instead Mauer's been saddled with lingering injuries attached with terms like "soreness" and "weakness." It didn't help that this came on the heels of an offseason when Mauer signed an eight-year, $184 million contract that might cripple the franchise if he doesn't return to 2009 form.

Further, Mauer's dedication to his teammates is being questioned, which is the worst possible question that could be asked about a team leader.

Sunday, ESPN.com's Buster Olney wrote the following about Mauer: "He probably is aware, too, that some of that unhappiness with his dedication exists within his own clubhouse, where his peers would be happy to see fewer Mauer commercials and more Mauer at-bats."

Mauer believes this is unfair.

"I think when I say 'unfair' it's more like, you know, like the other day -- questioning toughness," he explained (TwinCities.com). "Really, I mean, I'm not trying to sound (self-righteous), but how can somebody that's maybe been in the clubhouse once this year question toughness, and an athlete in general?"

Mauer also told reporters that he understands that he's going to be the one who takes the heat, being a former MVP and having that huge contract. He also has set the goal of entering 2012 the strongest he's ever been in his career. In fact, he has already made arrangements to upgrade his offseason training regimen.

"The biggest thing is having a regular offseason," Mauer said (StarTribune.com). "This year has been pretty tough for me, probably the toughest season I've been through, physically. Last year wasn't easy either. I had that heel injury and things kind if trickled down from that.

"It will be nice," he continued (StarTribune.com). "Hopefully I'll have somewhat of a normal offseason. I've got things in place. I've learned a lot over the last couple of years. I think I have the right people and program in place to have a good offseason."

Manager Ron Gardenhire sounds supportive, but firm, in speaking on Mauer's plans to work harder in the offseason.

"He realizes you can't sit around and do nothing as you get older. He's going to stay after it. We've talked about it," the manager said (TwinCities.com). "He's going to do some different things this winter, and prepare a little bit more and a little bit longer and come into spring training ready to go. That's the plan he has, and it's a good plan."

It's certainly going to be interesting to see how Mauer fares in 2012. It very well may be the most important season in determining whether or not his colossal contract was a mistake.

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Category: MLB
Comments

Since: Feb 27, 2008
Posted on: August 28, 2011 2:14 pm
 

Amid criticism, Mauer to alter offseason training

lol, maybe I should have done more than glance over the article.  I see he is more concerned with his conditioning than his power for the offseason.  My bad.




Since: Feb 27, 2008
Posted on: August 28, 2011 2:12 pm
 

Amid criticism, Mauer to alter offseason training

What does he mean alter his regimen?  Roids? 

The guy is hitting for average.  The stadium change is most glaring reason I see for the huge power dropoff, but it's not like he's hitting HR's on the road. 

Obviously you twin fans would like to see him show even occasional power, but I can already see a worse season next year.  He'll start swinging for the fences, get too big to run, start dropping his shoulder, his average will drop, etc.

Of course, he could change his training up and perform the way he wants to.  We shall see.  I'm cheering for him personally.



Since: Sep 14, 2006
Posted on: August 28, 2011 2:03 pm
 

Amid criticism, Mauer to alter offseason training

I think MR MAUER has gotten by on his talent alone the last few years, much like a lot of nfl qbs that can only run. Now its catching up to him because he didnt take his conditioning and weight training serious enough. When you get 23million a year, you better, and hes learning it. I bet we see a completely different Mauer next year, although I would like to see a little attitude out of mr indifferent.



Since: Dec 27, 2007
Posted on: August 28, 2011 1:30 pm
 

Amid criticism, Mauer to alter offseason training

Mauer also told reporters that he understands that he's going to be the one who takes the heat, being a former MVP and having that huge contract. He also has set the goal of entering 2012 the strongest he's ever been in his career. In fact, he has already made arrangements to upgrade his offseason training regimen.

"The biggest thing is having a regular offseason," Mauer said (). "This year has been pretty tough for me, probably the toughest season I've been through, physically. Last year wasn't easy either. I had that heel injury and things kind if trickled down from that.



How idiotic is it to question any catcher's toughness? It's not like he's playing 1B or RF. Obviously catching wears on you. He's very smart to understand he needs to train better since the wear-and-tear is being felt and he's aging. A position change to 1B would be most welcomed for him. Odds are he returns in 2012, hits over .300, knocks in 100 runs and the Twins are contenders again. He may see more time @ 1B, DH and maybe even RF. If he can catch 100 or less games, the better it is for him and the Twins.

As for the commercials, Mauer is a natural. He's one of the few athletes who actually has some acting ability. Keep the commercials, trade in a better fashion and play multiple positions.

As for the Twins, unless they upgrade their pitching staff, they'll be far short of teams like Boston, New York and Texas. Winning a weak division is one thing, winning a playoff series is another.



Since: Oct 16, 2007
Posted on: August 28, 2011 1:12 pm
 

Amid criticism, Mauer to alter offseason training

180 mill and he has to do commercials on the side? no wonder he's being questioned...i'm not saying he has to be a hermit or anything , but maybe lead by example by being the hardest working player on your team all year round. For a guy to look up to, Google Halladay, Roy and you won't go wrong.theres a man that worked hard as hell to get back when he was demoted all the way down to single A ball several years ago, and now that he is at the Apex of the pitching world he is still probably the hardest worker in Baseball.



Since: Oct 14, 2008
Posted on: August 28, 2011 1:08 pm
 

Amid criticism, Mauer to alter offseason training

He needs to alter that hefty, over indulged, contract of his if he's to be an honorable man. 


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