Oh, Joe! How do I love thee? Let me count the ways. . .
1. Your patience at the plate boggles minds everywhere
2. Your impeccable sideburns cause jealousy among men
3. Your insistence that I only fly Sun Country is inspiring
4. Your batting average is mesmerizing
Still, Joe, we need to talk. . .
Joseph Patrick Mauer
Birthplace: St. Paul, MN
MLB Debut: 4/5/2004
Here are your stats from 2005-2007
Here are the stats from this 2008 season
First of all, great job on the average. Not quite the 2006 magnitude, but great nonetheless. I am always impressed with your ability to take a walk. . . it's as good as a hit, as long as J. Morneau is doing his job and not grounding into a double play. I think everyone would appreciate if you talked to him and told him, "Hey buddy, it's okay to take a pitch." As for you, Mr. Mauer, let's consider stealing a base from time to time. I know you value your knees (and believe me, I do too), but it's time, Joe.
The roar of the crowd is palpable when your name is announced in the Dome. Imagine how it would increase if you stole a base so you didn't get to 2nd on a fielder's choice. Don't get me wrong, Joey. . . you're the batting champ. Perhaps I'm not the one to give you advice. In fact, it's quite obvious that I'm probably not, but I think you should pay attention anyway. You're amazing at what you do, and I'd just like to suggest some improvements. 1st, the base stealing. 2nd, I'd like to hear some better music when you come to the plate. That's it, Joe. Those are my suggestions.
Furthermore, I'd like to praise you on your strikeouts this year. 50 strikeouts in 546 at bats? That's unprecidented. Let's compare this stat to other players in the big leagues:
Joe Mauer: 50 SO in 546 AB
Torii Hunter: 108 SO in 551 AB
Josh Hamilton: 126 SO in 624 AB
Alex Rodriguez: 117 SO in 510 AB
Lance Berkman: 108 SO in 554 AB
In conclusion, here's what I'm looking for from you in 2009, J. Mauer:
Positive: Steal it, Joe!!!
Negative: That's gross, Joe.
Hometown hero, we love you so.