Joe Mauer pens retirement letter to Twins fans
Joe Mauer is retiring after 15 major league seasons, six All-Star games, three Gold Glove awards, three batting titles and 2,123 career hits, all with his hometown Minnesota Twins.
“Thank you, Minnesota Twins, and thank you, fans, for making my career as special and memorable as it was,” Mauer wrote in a full-page ad that will run Sunday in the Minneapolis Star Tribune and St. Paul Pioneer Press. “Because of you I can leave the game I love with a full and grateful heart.”
Mauer’s eight-year, $184 million contract expired the day after the World Series ended, creating a natural parting from the game he grew up with in St. Paul, less than 10 miles from the downtown Minneapolis ballparks he called home with the Twins.
“The decision came down to my health and my family,” Mauer wrote. “The risk of a concussion is always there, and I was reminded of that this season when I missed 30 games as a result of diving for a foul ball. That’s all it took this time around and it was all I need to bring me back to the struggles I faced in 2013.”
Mauer is 35 and his eightyear, $184 million contract expired after this season. In his 15 major league seasons, Mauer has appeared in six All-Star games, won three Gold Gloves, three batting titles and racked up 2,123 career hits.
He walks away with a .306 batting average and a place in the top five on the team’s career lists in a clear majority of offensive categories. Mauer is their all-time leader in doubles and times on base and second in hits behind Kirby Puckett.
KUCHAR BUILDS TWO-SHOT LEAD IN MEXICO >> Kuchar scored a fortunate bogey after driving deep into trouble on the 12th hole, his only jam of the day, and he rode eight birdies to a 7-under 64 that gave him a two-shot lead over PGA Tour rookie Cameron Champ going into the weekend at the Mayakoba Golf Classic in Playa Del Carmen, Mexico.
Champ, going after his second victory in three weeks, played in the morning and shot 62 with a bogey on his final hole. Kuchar was at 14-under 128 as he tries to end more than four years without a PGA Tour victory.
GOYDOS LEADS SCHWAB CUP CHAMPIONSHIP >> Paul Goydos birdied the par-5 18th for a 6-under 65 and a onestroke lead in the PGA Tour Champions’ season-ending Charles Schwab Cup Championship.
Tied for the first-round lead with Tim Petrovic after a 63, Goydos had six birdies in the bogey-free round at Phoenix Country Club. Scott McCarron, one of six players left in the seasonlong Charles Schwab Cup points race for a $1 million annuity, was a stroke back after a 64.
BRYANT HURT, SAINTS TENURE COULD BE SHORT >> In just his second practice with New Orleans, receiver Dez Bryant receiver indicated in social media posts that he has had a significant setback. The team’s injury report listed Bryant as questionable for Sunday’s game in Cincinnati with an ankle injury, but a person familiar with the situation said the team is still awaiting the results of a doctor’s examination of Bryant. The 30-year-old signed with the Saints on Wednesday.
MACK SHOULD BE BACK WITH BEARS >> Khalil Mack, out two weeks with an ankle injury, practiced Friday to complete three straight days of full work. He is not listed on Chicago’s injury report and is expected to play Sunday against the Lions.
U.S. WHIPS SWEDEN, CRUISES
INTO 4 NATIONS CUP TITLE GAME >> Sydney Brodt, Melissa Samoskevich and Hannah Brandt scored in the first period and the U.S. women’s hockey team beat Sweden 5-1 to cruise into the Four Nations Cup title game in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan.
HARVICK GRABS POLE >> The cheating scandal that knocked Kevin Harvick out of NASCAR’s championship round didn’t slow him a bit at one of his favorite race tracks. Harvick won the pole for Sunday’s final qualifying race for the championship finale with a strong run that briefly overshadowed the controversy his Stewart-Haas Racing team created with an illegal part. Harvick turned a lap at 139.340 mph Friday around ISM Raceway outside Phoenix to put himself in position to requalify for the championship.
SAN JOSE STATE ELIMINATED >> San Jose State women’s season came to an end at UCLA as the Spartans fell to the No. 4 Bruins 5-0 in the opening round of the NCAA tournament. The Spartans (9-7-6) were coming off a Mountain West tournament championship. STANFORD STARTS STRONG >> Top-seeded Stanford (180-2) eased past Seattle University with a 3-0 at home to open the NCAA tournament. Stanford’s programrecord unbeaten streak stretches to 42 games. Civana Kuhlmann and Carly Malatskey scored, and the Redhawks contributed an own goal.