I'm no expert. But I know this time next year, Joe Mauer should be a Yankee.
For all the warm and fuzzy commentary about Joe Mauer needing to remain a Minnesota Twin for the sake of preserving the hopes of small-market teams everywhere, there is an underlying ominous implication that if he doesn't he will be branded baseball's all-time biggest sellout and eviscerated by pure-hearted baseball fans everywhere.
The arguments for why Mauer should remain with the Twins are many and don't require another recitation here. Alleged experts of every stripe have made the case.
What has not been rationally discussed anywhere, however, are the reasons Mauer must go forth 12 months hence, don the pinstripes, and fulfill his destiny in the Bronx.
Rather than make the case myself, lest I be savaged as unqualified to speak aloud that most unspoken of this baseball preseason's blasphemies, I will instead simply call upon true experts out there in the fraternal order of baseball fans to answer the following five questions:
1) Can anyone in the hospitality industry explain how late Twins owner Carl Pohlad expected the new Target Field—an open-air venue in a town where it's still snowing in April, still freezing in May, and flurries fall in September—to be a greater fan attraction than the old, warm, cozy dome?
2) Can anyone in the actuarial industry explain how the Twins will have a better shot at winning a Series or bettering their record when they lose that crazy ball-camouflaging roof which was the greatest home-field advantage in sports?
3) Can anyone in the field of orthopedic surgery explain how shortened Mauer's career will be squatting, blocking, throwing, sliding, and getting beaned in freezing, slushy temperatures and winds for half the season every year?
4) Can anyone out there in the land of sabermetric wizards explain the devastating impact Target Field's rugged outdoor climate will have on Mauer's dome-protected hitting and fielding stats?
5) Can anyone in the Vegas gaming fraternity calculate the odds on Mauer's charming hometown loyalty evaporating once his agent explains to his beloved grandmother she can afford to move every member of her extended family, every distant relative, and every friend she ever had to warm, sunny Tampa, where the Yankees train and fly first-class to every game and have enough money left over to buy space heaters for every man, woman, and child she left behind in the Twin Cities plus tickets for them to all fly to N.Y. to watch him help the Yankees win their third consecutive ring in 2011 if he just sits tight, doesn't sign, stays healthy for nine months, and waits for Brian Cashman to call?
The answers to these questions from experts in the fields I've named, I believe, will combine to reveal the inescapable conclusion that irresistibly charming and likeable Mauer The Twin must die.
All hail the coming of his evil twin Yankee Joe Mauer.
And when the monstrous Yankee Joe does indeed rumble forth next season, expect from wary teams, GMs, owners and fan bases throughout the American League—not to mention self-righteous sports writers and media pundits everywhere else—an apocalyptic outcry.
Oh, the horror. The horror.
[For some more pre-season chucks and giggles, check out my musical comedy vid "Joe's Job - The Ballad of Terry Francona" at
It's must-see entertainment for baseball fans everywhere. Go Yankees! 28 in 2010!!]