As the foremost Twins dude on the Internets I defer to Aaron’s take on the Mauer deal. But others have weighed in too. Let’s take a look-see:
- J.C. Bradbury: “I worry that the Twins may have stretched a bit here with this long-term
commitment . . . But the Twins are one of the best-managed organizations in baseball, so I
think they deserve the benefit of the doubt.”
- Matthew Carruth, FanGraphs: “In the short term, this deal is fair to both sides. Where it might get
dicey is down the line when Mauer reaches his mid-30s. I don’t think him
staying at catcher is needed for this to work out though. Mauer’s bat
is good enough to stand a move to first base and he would benefit from a
likely increase in playing time. My concern is simply that for being on
the hook for eight years and giving him a full no trade clause, I feel
the Twins should have gotten a bit more of a discount.”
- SethSpeaks: “Yes, this deal
is more than just about baseball, but from a purely baseball aspect,
a great deal.”
- Twinkie Town: “I can’t tell you how ecstatic I am about this. Right now, this looks
like a fantastic deal for both sides. It’s a very fair deal,
particularly when you expect baseball’s financial market to rebound in
coming seasons. As long as Joe stays healthy, that is.”
- Only Baseball Matters: “That’s how you handle a once-in-a-generation talent. Teams that are
run by real general managers, and owned by real men who know what the
hell they are doing, understand this.”
- TYU: “Yankee fans who were planning on acquiring him to replace Jorge Posada
will have to look elsewhere.”
- Mark Steyn: “more bureaucracy, massive IRS expansion, explosive debt, the end of the
Pax Americana, and global Armageddon.”
That last one was about health care reform, not Mauer specifically. I include it, though, because what with the global Armageddon and all, it’s not like the Twins will really have to worry about the back end of the Mauer contract. Total win-win for Minnesota, really.
This one is brutal. Tigers’ right-handed reliever Alex Wilson was diagnosed with a broken leg after taking a blistering 103.8-MPH line drive off of his right leg during Saturday’s game against the Twins. According to the Detroit News’ Chris McCosky, it’s a non-displaced fibular fracture, but will still warrant an extended recovery period and signal the end of Wilson’s season.
Wilson replaced Drew VerHagen to start the eighth inning and worked a full count against Joe Mauer. Mauer roped an 93.3-MPH fastball back up the middle, where it struck the pitcher on his right calf. While Mauer took first base, Wilson got to his feet and tried to toss a warm-up pitch, but was in too much pain to continue and had to be helped off the field.
Even in a season that isn’t going anywhere in particular, this isn’t how you want it to end. The Tigers have yet to announce a recovery timetable for the 30-year-old reliever, but he won’t return to the mound until 2018. He exited Saturday’s outing with a 4.35 ERA, 2.3 BB/9 and 6.3 SO/9 over 60 innings.
The Tigers currently trail the Twins 10-3 in the bottom of the ninth inning.
The Yankees guaranteed their place in the postseason with a 5-1 win over the Blue Jays on Saturday. Sonny Gray led the charge against their division rivals, clinching his 10th win of the season with six innings of four-hit, one-run, four-strikeout ball.
Gray worked into a little trouble in the first inning, putting runners in scoring position after Josh Donaldson drew a four-pitch walk and Justin Smoak advanced him with a single. The Yankees’ ace induced two quick outs to end the threat, but was overpowered by a Teoscar Hernandez home run in the third inning, the rookie’s fourth blast of the season:
Thankfully for the Yankees, that was the only run that slipped through the cracks. Gray finished the remainder of his outing with two hits and two walks and was backed by another three scoreless innings from the bullpen. Greg Bird supplied the go-ahead run with a three-RBI shot in the fifth inning, plating Chase Headley and Starlin Castro to give the Yankees their first lead of the night.
Todd Frazier tacked on another solo homer in the eighth, while Starlin Castro returned in the ninth to cap the win with an RBI single. Aroldis Chapman did the rest, wielding just 10 pitches to get three straight outs from Kendrys Morales, Kevin Pillar and Rob Refsnyder.
Following Saturday’s win, the Yankees have at least secured one wild card berth, though they’re not out of the division race just yet. They still sit a full four games back of first place in the AL East, with eight games left to play.