Giants focused on acquiring Corey Hart from Brewers

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Henry Schulman of the San Francisco Chronicle hears that the Giants are “focusing on” acquiring Corey Hart from the Brewers.

Just yesterday, Schulman told us that Giants general manager Brian Sabean and one of his top scouts Lee Elder were in Milwaukee, “perhaps scouting trade targets Corey Hart, Prince Fielder and Ryan Braun.” With the other two a relative pipe dream, it’s no surprise to learn that Hart is their primary and realistic target. 

Tonight, Schulman writes that the Giants “would love” to have Hart in their outfield, but are unsure whether the Brewers have decided to trade him or not. The Brewers are currently 37-46, on the fringes of contention in the National League. Also, the 28-year-old outfielder is under team control for one more season. 

Hart, 28, enters play Tuesday batting .288/.350/.573 over his first 281 at-bats this season. The two-time All-Star currently ranks third in the National League with 19 homers, second with 61 RBI and eighth with a 923 OPS.

Naturally, he won’t come cheap. For what it’s worth, Schulman believes Hart would cost (Jonathan) Sanchez plus another piece. That would be quite a nice get for someone who was essentially a platoon player at the start of the season. 

Twins to retire Joe Mauer’s No. 7

AP Photo/Jim Mone
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Twins senior director of communications Dustin Morse announced that the Twins will honor former C/1B Joe Mauer by retiring his uniform number 7. Mauer announced his retirement from baseball on November 9.

Mauer will join Harmon Killebrew (No. 3), Tony Oliva (No. 6), Tom Kelly (No. 10), Kent Hrbek (No. 14), Rod Carew (No. 29), Kirby Pucket (No. 34), and Bert Blyleven (No. 28) as Twins to have their numbers retired.

Mauer, 35, spent 15 seasons in the majors, all with the Twins. He posted a career .306/.388/.439 triple-slash line with 143 home runs and 923 RBI. He won the AL MVP Award in 2009, won the batting title three times, earned three Gold Gloves and five Silver Sluggers, and made the AL All-Star team six times. Sadly, his career was limited due to injuries, including a concussion that caused him to move from catcher to first base.

Five years from now, Mauer will appear on the Hall of Fame ballot. There will certainly be some arguments for and against his candidacy. He retired with 55.1 career Wins Above Replacement, according to Baseball Reference, which definitely puts him in the conversation. But, as always, there’s never a consensus.