Joe Mauer will be with the Twins through 2018! Late Sunday night, news broke that Mauer and Twins had agreed to an 8-year, $184 million contract. While that means Mauer will receive $23 million in salary each year until his 35 years old, I have no qualms whatsoever with the deal. I know he's a catcher, and it's unlikely he will maintain his level of performance and stick at catcher for that long; but it all doesn't matter right now. Being able to gloat and remind any Yankees fans, Red Sox fans, or other Joe Mauer suitors that they'll never have him is worth more than anything.
Sure, I am aware of the possibility that this deal could cripple the Twins and leave them struggling to compete in a few years, but even if it does I won't regret it. The thought of losing the best player in the American League, the most popular player on the team, and my favorite baseball player of all-time to somebody else was just unbearable. If he does suffer through injuries or his performance declines for any reason, I would be upset not because Minnesota is overpaying him, but because my favorite player is not playing as well as he once was.
Despite the positive reports about the contract negotiations, I was sweating bullets the entire time, waiting to hear the good news that Joe Mauer would remain a Twin past 2010. Now I can wear my Mauer shirts with pride, stare appreciatively at my Mauer banner, and wait longingly for the season to see his sweet swing in action, rather than seeing them all as taunts of what the Twins used to have.
My trepidation gone, I now would like nothing more than to see the Twins take the field for the first time this decade.