Wednesday, February 23, 2011

News of the day: Mauer and Punto

This is for the hair. The other stuff goes in the knee.
Joe Mauer would rather talk shampoo than knee injections, which isn't surprising.

He's getting paid to hawk shampoo now. And any medical report concerning his knee -- such as the revelation that he is getting injections of a lubricating fluid in his left knee -- is bound to bump up the near-constant chatter about moving him from the catcher position, and that gets old real fast.

This is, apparently, less about current problems than about preventing future issues. Mauer has twice had surgery on the knee, and nobody can doubt that the constant squatting involved in the position takes a toll.

The Twins had said Mauer would be held back from catching chores during camp (in fact, Seth Stohs says another minor leaguer, Dan Rohlfing, has been brought in to handle bullpen chores), and maybe nobody would have noticed Mauer's likely series of absences as he has more of the injections in future weeks.

Or maybe they would. Mauer may not like being the center of attention, but that is part of the bargain that includes lucrative paydays not only as a receiver and hitter of pitches but also for pitching video games and hair care products.


It's going to be a while before former Twins infielder Nick Punto slides headfirst again. Punto, who signed with St. Louis almost as soon as the Twins shut the door on him, needs hernia surgery and isn't expected to play until sometime in May.

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