As the freshness of Mauer’s career continues to fade, the debate on whether the St. Paul, Minn. native should be in Cooperstown is likely to be a hot one. On one hand, Mauer was one of the greatest offensive catchers to ever play the game, but his lackluster numbers at first base leave a bad taste in the mouths of many. (Oh, and did we mention that massive contract?)
For all the things that drove Twins fans crazy over the years, Mauer was a catcher of historical proportions. Before Mauer put on his pinstriped uniform, no catcher had ever won a batting title in the American League. When he retired last winter, Mauer had done it three times — the most ever for any catcher in the history of Major League Baseball. He also put together one of the most dominant seasons ever for a catcher during his MVP campaign in 2009.
Mauer’s peripheral numbers also look like a career that should be considered for enshrinement as he hit .306, was a six-time All-Star and took home three Gold Gloves to go with five Silver Slugger awards at catcher. While Mauer is one of the most polarizing players in Twins’ history, his historical significance should be enough to get him to Cooperstown.