Brace Hemmelgarn-US PRESSWIRE
While he may never return to his 2009 American League Most Valuable Player form, Joe Mauer has put together a season that Twins fans should find acceptable in 2012.
Mauer leads the American League in on-base percentage (.420 entering Sunday) and is toward the top of the league in batting average (.334). While his power numbers aren't anywhere close to the 29 home runs in 2009, it may be something that Twins fans will have to learn to accept all over again.
Remember, the average Mauer line for a season is a .324 average with 15 home runs and 88 runs batted in. As of right now, Mauer is on pace to come close to most of those numbers.
There are plenty of fans that still bash Mauer at every opportunity they can, but if the Twins were toward the top of the AL Central standings, would anybody be complaining?
Also take into consideration that many people were questioning Mauer's toughness and ability to play through pain coming into the season. He's responded by playing in 86 games in 2012 (although most of those have been away from the catcher position).
The Twins need Joe Mauer to keep this up and maybe, after another full offseason of being healthy, Mauer can get those power numbers up and justify his massive contract.
In any shape or form, a healthy Mauer is a good thing for the Twins.