No deal in place yet for Mauer

There has been a lot of speculation in recent days that the Twins will soon sign catcher Joe Mauer to a contract extension.

But so far there is no deal in place.

A source familiar with the negotiations denied a report by WCCO-TV that Mauer and the Twins have reached preliminary agreement on a 10-year contract.

While no deal is currently in place, negotiations on a contract extension have been ongoing between Mauer’s agent,
Ron Shapiro, and the Twins. But the two sides have been reluctant to discuss any details of
the situation publicly.

The idea of a 10-year deal for the catcher does not seem out of reason based on the catcher’s career so far. Mauer, who will turn 27 on April 19, has already won thee batting titles, two Gold Gloves and the 2009 American League MVP Award. He is set to make $12.5 million this season, the final year of a
four-year, $33 million deal.

Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said on Friday he hasn’t gotten involved in the negotiations concerning Mauer, but he’s optimistic that the club will ink the St. Paul native to a contract
extension. His belief is that something will get done before the team
reports for Spring Training.

“I don’t sit and fret about it,” Gardenhire said. “I think the
right thing is going to happen. I think we all know the ramifications
if something weren’t to happen and it were to go the other way. That
wouldn’t be a good thing for anybody, except for maybe some clubs out
East.

“I think everybody knows what needs to get done here. From our
owners to our general manager to our fan base, we all know what
everybody wants. It is right out there for us … and I think they’ll
make it happen.”

On Friday, Mauer said he hopes his contract
situation doesn’t become a distraction for the team. Pitchers and catchers will report to Fort Myers, Fla. on Sunday, Feb. 21 for the start of Spring Training.

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