The Mauer story

WCCO’s Mark Rosen is no hack when it comes to reporting. But the media is bending over backwards to declare his report yesterday that Joe Mauer and the Twins have reached an agreement on a 10-year contract “false.”

Not so fast.

Let’s look at the story, again.

A source tells WCCO-TV’s Mark Rosen that American League MVP Joe Mauer has come to a preliminary agreement with the Minnesota Twins for a 10-year contract extension.

Given that Rosen is highly regarded, the odds are that at least one of his sources are:

1. Joe Mauer

2. Joe Mauer’s agent

3. The Minnesota Twins

Let’s examine the denials

The Star Tribune’s Joe Christensen quotes sources “close to the Mauer family” in noting that there’s no deal.

Two people close to the Mauer family said they’d heard the framework of a deal — number of years and guaranteed money — may already be in place, with the sides simply ironing out details such as deferred payments. Those claims have gone unconfirmed by people close to the negotiations.

“Going unconfirmed” is not the same as saying a story is wrong. And isn’t the “framework of a deal” — money and number of years — pretty much what a preliminary agreement is?

The Star Tribune’s Lavelle E. Neal offers the obvious conclusion — preliminary deal/no preliminary deal, Mauer is likely staying. And that’s the story.

Minnesota Public Radio’s Tim Post got the Twins’ denial:

But a Twins spokesman tells MPR that a deal between the 26-year-old star catcher and the Twins has not been signed.

But nobody said a deal has been signed, only that a preliminary agreement had been reached.

USA Today’s baseball writer, Bob Nightengale, “tweeted” :

Joe Mauer laughed at reports that he agreed to a 10 year contract with the Twins. No truth, he says. also declared there was “no truth” to the report:

but two sources with direct knowledge of the negotiations said there was no truth to the report.

Again, two sources with direct knowledge would likely be (a) Mauer, (b) Mauer’s agent and (c) The Twins. If those look familiar, take another look at Rosen’s likely sources.

If Mauer ends up signing a 10-year deal, someone’s sources are fibbing.

However, as the story points out, the general feeling around these parts is that Mauer will sign with the Twins. So Rosen is likely at least preliminarily correct.

In any event, who is volunteering to tell the Yankees Joe Mauer won’t be wearing pinstripes?

  • Randy

    I just want to be the one to tell my Brooklyn native friend Nick (and insufferable, die-hard Yanquis fan) that Joe Mauer will now and forever be a Minnesota Twin (until the seventh year of the contract that includes player options kicks in and he opts out to sign with NY to win a few titles).

  • Steve

    The Mauer saga is a little bit like Clinton’s definition of the word “is.” Everyone is hiding behind semantics.

    My hunch is that the parties have reached a point where they feel the deal will get done (i.e. “a framework”). However, there are still details to be hammered out (incentive clauses, deferred payments, marketing agreements, etc.). That means it’s possible that the deal could fall through and those saying that no deal has been reaches are technically right. However, Rosen is also likely right in reporting that Joe Mauer will remain a Twin for the next decade.