MINNEAPOLIS, MN - AUGUST 27: Joe Mauer #7 of the Minnesota Twins smiles after hitting a single Felix Hernandez #34 of the Seattle Mariners during the fourth inning on August 27, 2012 at Target Field in Minneapolis, Minnesota. (Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images)
In the class of news you could dub a wee bit surprising, the Minnesota Twins have placed home town hero and franchise golden boy Joe Maueron waivers. This is the first time the Twins have placed Mauer on waivers this season (not to mention probably his career) which means the waivers are revocable. As we've talked about in the past, teams tend to place most of their players on waivers in August whether they have intentions to trade them or not.
Mauer, who's accumulated 3.7 wins above replacement so far this season, is enjoying a pretty solid bounce back campaign following the disaster that was 2011. Among baseball's eight catchers who qualify for awards this season, Mauer leads the pack in runs scored, hits, and on-base percentage; he's second in doubles, stolen bases, and walks; and he's third in batting average behind Buster Posey and Yadier Molina.
With Mauer's waivers expiring at noon central time today, we will find out relatively soon whether he is claimed or clears waivers. While it's hard to imagine the Twins trading Mauer, and let's be honest it's not really going to happen, the front office might have a few more options presented to them if waivers are cleared.
My dad's text this morning Mauer's on the trading block!isn't quite accurate, but for a team like the Twins to place a guy with circumstances like Joe on waivers at all, it has to beg the question: what's the end game? My instinct tells me the front office would never move Mauer, so to even explore the waivers option appears to be an exercise in futility.
Or maybe I need to check my assumptions. A player being placed on waivers in August isn't an uncommon occurrence, yet Mauer isn't just A Player. Still: would the Twins risk not just imploding their fan base but imploding faith in the franchise among players in Major League Baseball? I can't believe they would.