Wednesday, November 25, 2009

How I ticked off an entire state with my craven desire for Joe Mauer

Minnesota Twins fans aren't taking too kindly to my column yesterday about how I think Joe Mauer will be a Yankee in 2011. In fact, they're up in arms over my shameless coveting of their team's best player. Imagine that.

Here's the story. In "AL MVP Joe Mauer - A Future Yankee," I wrote, "Why wouldn't he want to be a Yankee? Playing for the Bombers is the stuff dreams are made of!"

For some strange reason, Twins fans weren't exactly pleased over this post. Twin Cities fan Two Seam Fastblog was not amused, writing this in our comments section:
This needs to stop. Because you know what, Yankee fans, Mauer's not coming to you. You can't have him, because the Twins can afford him, and since they CAN afford him, they will retain him. Check back in 7 years, then maybe you can try a 33 year old Mauer. That seems fair. But if the Twins can offer 120M to Santana, they can offer 140M to Mauer. We have a new stadium. We have payroll room. We're not THAT small market, despite what a lot of Twins fans will lead you to believe.
Speaking of that new stadium, what's the over/under for snowouts? Ten?

TwoSeam continues:
Do you realize that every move the Twins' front office makes has to be passively approved by Mauer? He wanted the team to do something in terms of trades this past season. I give you, Carl Pavano, Orlando Cabrera, Jon Rauch, Ron Mahay, JJ Hardy. We locked up his best friend, Justin Morneau. He was asked for input on our new uniforms, for gods sake.
I'm snickering over how much former Yankee Carl Pavano has turned his career around in that he was actually a hot property for a playoff race this year. And yes, he did bring his A-game to the postseason. Too bad A-Rod beat him with his own A-game!
Yeah, you joyless bastards can dream, but I suppose you'll just have to rely on one of the most catching rich farm systems in baseball for 7 more years. Or for Brian McCann. Whatever. I'm just sick of you trivializing breaking the collective hearts of an entire region of the country. Because that's what losing Mauer would do to us. He isn't important to just Minnesota, but parts of Wisconsin, Iowa, the Dakotas. We kept Kirby Puckett on one of the biggest contracts in history (WOW SAME AGENT AS MAUER), and we'll keep Joe. Screw you guys.

So if Mauer becomes a Yankee, we'll have broken the hearts of not just a state, but a whole region of the U.S.? Cool!

C'mon, TwoSeam. Do you think this shameless play to my emotions will sway me? Remember, I'm a Yankee fan. I have no heart!

The commenter continued this argument at the blog Two Seam Fastblog.  Go there to read more of the case against this Squawker, in a post entitled "Thy Heartless New Yorkers shalt no longer Covet our Dear Mauer." I love it!

The Over The Baggy Twins fan site linked to my column as well; they were also not thrilled with Yankee fans drooling over Mauer.

And other Minnesota fans wrote into Subway Squawkers to give me grief. Myjah said:
Mauer isn't going to become a Yankee. Want to know why?
"I've had a chance to go up in the deer stand a few times, and everyone here knows that when you're up in the deer stand you think about a lot of different things," Mauer quipped. "Just about the type of year we had as a team, the run that we had. I think coming into the season, my goal personally was just to stay on the field. To be here sitting today and being the MVP is more than I could have ever imagined."
Yeah--up in his DEER STAND, probably by his log cabin in the middle of nowhere where he does things like mow his own lawn.

Do you really think Joe is aching to live/play in New York City so he can make even more millions of dollars?

The Twins will offer him the biggest contract in Twins history. With their new stadium, they can afford Joe. He'll stay in Minnesota by his grandparents (who come to every Twins game) and his deer stand. That's just the type of guy he is.
I used to live in Texas, where the opening day of deer season is as highly anticipated an event among hunters as the opening of the new "Twilight" movie is among teenagers. And this deer-hunting event happens everywhere in November. So Mauer could be a Yankee, and still come home to Minnesota and shoot to his heart's content in the offseason. Come to think of it, we have deer-hunting in the tri-state area as well. And with all the money Mauer could make as a Yankee, he could build the most souped-up deer stand ever, and wear an NY camouflage hat to boot!

John from Minneapolis did not think the possibility of endorsement money would not be what might sway Mauer to become a Yankee. He suggested a different reason:
I think that the lure of the pinstripes, in the sense of being part of a historic, championship organization, will be more of an enticement for Mauer than money. I think he really does want to play on a World Series team, and that will decide whether he stays in Minny or not.

I'm just waiting for when Mauer claims he grew up idolizing Don Mattingly, the way Mark Teixeira claimed in his first Yankee press conference.

By the way, Minnesota fans, I despise Brett Favre. My hatred for the Minnesota Vikings quarterback is long-standing and deep. I look forward to when he turns into a pumpkin again, the way Roger Clemens did in the 2007 ALDS. So there!

Photo by Keith Allison

What do you think? Vote in our Joe Mauer poll at the top of the page, and leave us a comment!


Anonymous said...

I just want to wish everyone a Happy Thanksgiving...may it be filled with love and happiness..may you be filled with the turkey and trimmings ..ENJOY !!!


Go Yankees 2010 !!!

Anonymous said...

Lisa, I am a diehard fan of the Yankees,been one since 1968. But I am also a BASEBALL fan, so I hope that Joe Mauer is able to get a deal that will make him willing to play in his home state for his home team. What makes baseball the best sport for me is the COMPETITION and seeing stars play for different teams througout the league. That's why when your team wins it all its such a great experience. I'm sure the Yankees will be able to find a player on the farm that can help the team continue to be successful. Will he be like Jorge Posada? Probably not. But trying to BUY a player like Mauer just reaffirms the things that people say is wrong with the Yankees specifically and the sport of baseball in general. If thats how you want to see the sport played then we need to go to a salary cap.

Anonymous said...

This is very funny, but Mauer should and will remain a Twin (and yes, I'm a Yankee fan and of course I would LUUUURVE him on my team - sorry Jorge and Cervelli!). I'd be EXTREMELY surprised if he went to any other team; I feel like he is the franchise, and not only that, he's a hometown boy. Then again, they traded Santana for basically crap and let Torii Hunter walk...

Paul from Boston said...

The best part of this post is how you end with a quick spew of Favre-hatred (a point we can agree on) and then the first comment from Peggy is filled with all sorts of joyous wishes. Just made me laugh. Bless you Peggy - I think they could use you in the Middle-East!

As for the original post - wow, I thought midwestern folks were supposed to be more kick-back and chilled than us in the Northeast. If I didn't know the topic I'd think the responses were coming from Sox fans! Kind of funny really.

Now, as for Mauer - I'm not convinced its as certain as you think Lisa.

I'd love to see him stay simply because it would be nice to see some hometown loyalty (okay and keeping him off the Yanks isn't bad either - but that's not really my main point).

Given how much he's already made its not like the difference between a Yankees and Twins offer would make or break his being set for life. To see him balk at the extra xx million that NY (or Boston for that matter) would offer to stick in his hometown wouldn't be such a bad story (team biases aside).

Have a great and safe Thanksgiving everyone!

Cheers from Boston

Janny said...

Ha ha ha ha. This is hilarious! Lisa, next week you need to write how we might want Joe Nathan to set up for Mariano. Since he can't beat the Yanks...he decides to join them.

Andrew Donaldson said...

After Nathan's collapse in the postseason, he--and his $12 million contract--are available if the Yanks want to trade for him.

The Twins are confident in their ability to turn anyone into an All Star caliber closer (as they've done for the last 20 or so years), and they could use the money.

I think there's a catcher they want to sign.

Anonymous said...

Yes, two blogs linking to your post means you ticked off an entire state. You give yourself too much credit. Nobody cares about you.

Subway Squawkers said...

First off, Happy Thanksgiving to everyone! And I agree with Paul's post!

Janny and Andrew, I hope the Yankees will pass on Nathan.

As for the last anon, thanks for taking time out on your Thanksgiving morning to berate me. Hilarious!

Uncle Mike said...

So, Twins fans think that their front office can afford to re-sign Joe Mauer and keep him away from the Yankees.

Of course they can. I've said it before, and, as it remains the truth, I'll say it again: Every team can afford to outspend the Yankees. If they couldn't, they wouldn't have been able to buy the team. But they don't spend what the Yankees spend. Why?

Greed! They love money more than winning! Back when Calvin Griffith was running the Twins, he was so cheap (How cheap was he?) that the joke was that he went to the opening of the walleye fishing season (so big in Minnesota that the Twins are always scheduled to be on the road when it happens so they don't get a pathetic crowd), caught his legal limit, and traded them to a local supermarket for a tractor-trailer full of Mrs. Paul's fish sticks. And the guy he sold the Twins to, Carl Pohlad, was one of the richest men in America, but was willing in 2001-02 to accept Bud Selig's deal to contract them, because it would be worth more money to him.

Yes, the Twins CAN re-sign Mauer. But WILL they? They gotta fill that new ballpark, but the person who told Lisa that they made a big offer to Johan Santana is overlooking the fact that Santana didn't take it, because a New York team offered him more. (And it wasn't even a GOOD New York team!)

Bottom line: There's more hot air in those Twins fans' comments than there was in the balloons in yesterday's Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade. To turn on their heads the words of the theme to the TV show most associated with Minnesota -- and I don't mean "Coach" -- looks like you're NOT gonna make it after all!

Myjah said...

The deer-stand post wasn't supposed to be taken so literally. Of course you can build a deer stand outside New York City--that wasn't the point...

It is flattering that Yankees fans think so highly of a non-Yankee player, but it is clear that some here don't understand Minnesota or the business of baseball.

"But WILL the Twins keep Mauer?" What kind of hair-brained question is that? It doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure out the team is going to do everything possible to retain the single biggest revenue generating facet of the entire organization. Do you really think the Twins are still in the dark about Joe Mauer being a once in a lifetime player for them?

Yeah--once in a lifetime. Those who actually know anything about the Twins and Minnesota before trying to speak authoritatively on the subject know this is not Torii Hunter or Johan Santana we are talking about here. It's mildly entertaining to find some people think because the Twins traded Johan Santana, the Twins aren't going to be able to re-sign Joe Mauer.

Joe will get a ton of money no mater where he plays. Money is not the issue. The issues are who can win and where Joe wants to be. The Yankees can win, but so can the Twins. So really--where does Joe want to be?

Just food for thought while you are sitting in your deer stands, Yankees fans.

P.S.--You'd have to be blind, deaf, and dumb to think "any team could outspend the Yankees."

Anonymous said...

Dear (Crazy) Uncle Mike,

A few things to consider:
1. Because the Yankees are in the biggest market in America, they have the ability to make profits way greater than any small market team possibly could. The biggest advantage here comes from profits for local TV broadcasts (which, mind you, are not subject to revenue sharing).

2. If an owner always spends more money on their team than the team makes, the owner will eventually go bankrupt. This is a SIMPLE MATTER OF BUSINESS AND ECONOMICS.

3. Hence, the difference between the Yankees and the other teams is NOT greed. Hell, a lot of small market owners DON'T EVEN TURN A PROFIT. How the hell could the fact that they don't spend more money be because of greed!?! Because the owner DOESN'T EVEN HAVE THAT KIND OF MONEY? Or because the owner doesn't want to run herself into financial ruin--I.E. they would like to CONTINUE being the owner of the team?

4. The fact the owner had enough money to buy the team in the first place says nothing. You obviously aren't aware that when you BUY something, you GIVE AWAY money in return for something else. You don't KEEP the money so you can spend more of it on your team. FURTHERMORE, the fact you had enough money to buy a team doesn't mean you have an infinite amount of money at your fingertips.

4. Comments like yours are exactly the reason why Yankees fans have a reputation for being total and complete fucking morons. Bravo for perpetuating the stereotype.

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