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Blatant Homerism

Even Joe Mauer’s grandfather is ripping the Twins star over season-long slump


Jake Mauer, the grandfather of Minnesota Twins homegrown star Joe Mauer, recently sat down for an interview with a Twin Cities blogger and admitted that he doesn’t blame the team’s fans for booing his grandson for a season-long slump.

Grandpa Jake, something of a local celebrity, told David Shama’s Minnesota Sports Headlines that fans have the right to boo Mauer given his enormous $23 million annual salary and more-than-sub-par season.

“He’s getting a big salary, he should produce,” the elder Mauer said.  “That’s what the fans think and that’s what the fans want.  He’s trying but it just don’t happen (yet).  But I don’t blame the people.”

Mauer’s grandfather even said benching should be in order, but due to Joe’s colossal salary, it’s not a feasible option.

“But they can’t bench him because he’s making so much money.  They gotta have him in the lineup,” Grandpa Jake admitted.

Mauer is having a historically poor season at the plate this season. A 12-game hot streak where he batted .362 to go with a .400 on-base percentage only lifted his season average to .271, drastically below his .320 career average.

The Twins and its fans expected Mauer’s offensive productivity to actually increase this year as the team moved him back from behind the plate in order to save him from the wear and tear of wearing the tools of ignorance and put him at first base. It appears to have backfired.

To make matters worse, Mauer’s recent hot streak was halted by a trip to the 15-day DL on July 1 due to a right oblique strain, exactly the kind of thing a position move was supposed to avoid.

“He couldn’t understand the (poor hitting) stretch that he went through,” Jake said.  “He’s never had it in his life.  He starts coming out of it and then he gets hurt.

“He says, ‘What the heavens are going to happen next? Here I suffer for two months and then I start a string of going good and then I get hurt.  It’s just terrible.’”

Despite his less-than-glowing comments about his grandson, Grandpa Jake nevertheless expects Mauer to rebound once he gets healthy, adding the first baseman will “definitely” be hitting over .300 by season’s end.

“He’s on his way and then he got hurt,” Jake said.

That’s the problem. He got hurt. Perhaps after 10 seasons of taking abuse behind the plate, Mauer is already breaking down. The Twins sure hope that’s not the case. And neither does Grandpa Jake. He doesn’t want to have to somewhat rip his grandson in the media again.

[Star Tribune]