One excellent way to kill time during the All-Star Break would be to read Jim Souhan’s excellent profile on Joe Mauer, which you can find here.
The best line comes from a friend of Mauer’s who says: “Joe Mauer is ‘Shaft, 2009. The ladies all want to be with him, and the men all want to be him.”
For those who need a quick cinema history lesson, go here
For those who want to ponder Mauer’s future with the Twins, beyond his 2010 contract expiration, you can start worrying about the words of Justin Morneau, as reported by Jim: “We’ve been so close at the deadline so many times. “If he feels like we’re content being that team that is just good enough not to lose, but everybody is going to have to have a career year for us to scrape into the playoffs, I think that’s going to affect his decision a lot. It’s frustrating going out every day and hearing that ‘We want to win a World Series,’ and then not seeing more aggressiveness. I think something like that is going to affect [Mauer's] decision more than the value of the contract. We’ve already got all the money we’re ever going to need.”
Mauer didn’t bite deep on the subject, which is understandable, other than to say: “Isn’t that why you play? To win championships? If I hit .250 and we won the World Series, I’d be happier than anyone.”
In other words, what happens for the rest of this season — with a team that’s four games out in a winnable division — could have a long-term influence on the Twins as they move into a new stadium. Target Field is looking good, but without Mauer and more top-level talent, it’ll become just another pretty space.