Minnesota Twins catcher Joe Mauer showed glimpses of full recovery during his workout on Thursday, leaving general manager Terry Ryan and manager Ron Gardenhire hopeful that he make a return to the field in 2013.
While the potential to have Mauer back in the lineup is obviously exciting, I’m not sure it’s the best move for the organization in the long run.
Concussions are pesky suckers, take it from someone with personal experience. Even if Mauer feels he is 100 percent, there is always a risk that the tiniest offset could spark a relapse into worse conditions.
The way I see it, playing Mauer really is of no advantage to the Twins at this point. Minnesota has fallen completely out of playoff contention, and Mauer likely isn’t going to break any personal records if they put him in the lineup for the final weeks.
Mauer’s return would be crucial if the Twins were making a run for the playoffs, but this is just not the case.
In the final weeks of the season, Minnesota has continued to struggle and demonstrate their inconsistency. The only plus to playing Mauer is the potential of maybe saving a tiny shred of dignity.
The risks, on the other had, are exponential. Overexerting Mauer could lead to further complications with his head, which could potentially land him on the bench for the 2014 season (and maybe for good).
The Twins’ major focus right now should be making major improvements in 2014. A talented crop of prospects is a major plus for the organization, but sustaining veterans like Mauer in the lineup all season will be crucial to the Minnesota and any postseason aspirations they may have.
Mauer should continue to rest during the last few weeks of the season. With only weeks left, it really makes no difference to the Twins’ overall success if Mauer is in the lineup or not. Give him an early offseason; let him take the winter as a time to fully ease back into the swing of things — pun intended.
Caroline Ponessa is a Minnesota Twins writer for RantSports.com. Follow her on Twitter @sweetCaro_____