The first clue about Joe Mauer’s baseball future comes when he talks not about his contract or career, but his 4-year-old twin daughters. Emily and Maren are in Florida this spring, Mauer said, because “they’ll be in kindergarten next year, so they can’t come down here.” That’s as opposed to their father, presumably. Maybe that’s a hint, maybe a guess, maybe a plan. The truth is, even Joe Mauer isn’t sure. The Twins’ most senior player, a man who relies on continuity and consistency above all else, officially reports to his 17th Twins camp Sunday with questions swirling around him like swamp flies in the nearby Everglades, triggered by the expiration next October of his club-record, eight-year, $184 million contract signed in March 2010. Is this farewell? Will he be with the Twins next year? Will he even be a professional baseball player anymore? “I get asked about this all the time,” Mauer says with his trademark shrug. “I honestly don’t know how to answer.” And in the absence of definitive information, forecasting Mauer’s fate is a popular pastime, inside and outside the clubhouse. “I don’t know why he would” retire, pitcher Phil Hughes said. “He didn’t look like he was slowing down last year.” “I think Joe is going to be a lifelong Twin,” manager Paul Molitor said. “That’s my gut reaction.” Mauer seems as afflicted by the attention as the uncertainty, but he admits to wondering himself.
Mauer: 'I have no intention' of leaving Twins after contract expires
Minneapolis Star Tribune | Feb 18