Say It Ain’t So, Joe…

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Well, to put it simply, I was duped…hook, line, and sinker.  During this entire offseason, all Twins fans kept hearing the reports about how Joe Mauer had some sort of kidney problem that required surgery, but that he should (key word) be fine for Opening Day 2009.  Over the course of the past few days, however, it has become painfully (for both Mauer and his fans) obvious that he will not be in the Opening Day lineup come April 6.  In fact, no timetable has even been set for his return, which is a bit scary.

From the very beginning, the entire Mauer situation has been shrouded in mystery, some of which still remains unknown.  All we were told early-on is that Mauer had surgery on his kidney, yet (after talking with my Dad, a doctor) there aren’t too many things besides kidney stones or tumors that need to be surgically dealt with on a kidney.  Plus, the extent of Mauer’s pain was not nearly known until just recently, when it was announced that he has inflamation in his right sacroiliac joint, which I guess is basically where the bottom of the spine meets the top of the pelvis.  Why that information wasn’t released sooner is beyond me.

What I guess I find so interesting about this whole thing is how it harkens back to the old days of reporters covering for baseball players.  For example, Babe Ruth went out and got himself a venereal disease and writers said he just had a “bellyache” from eating too many hot dogs and drinking too many beers.  Now, in no way am I saying that the MN Twins and related media are covering up some sort of indescretion on Mauer’s part, but they are protecting him from the media scrutiny, perhaps to not perpetuate his reputation as “weak” or “injury-prone”.

Personally, I would have like to have seen the Twins be a little more honest about the whole affair.  Sure, some people will criticize Mauer for being injury-prone, but those people are idiots, by and large, as injuries are something that really can’t be controlled.  Instead, why not just level with us and move on from there?

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