Updated: March 17th, 2011 2:17pm
Joe Mauer catches two innings in minor-league game

Joe Mauer catches two innings in minor-league game

by Phil Mackey
1500ESPN.com
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FORT MYERS, Fla. -- Minnesota Twins catcher Joe Mauer has taken another positive step in his recovery from offseason knee surgery.

Just 24 hours after tallying his first three spring-training at-bats as a designated hitter on Wednesday, Mauer caught right-hander Matt Capps for two innings in a minor-league game against Boston Red Sox A-ballers on Thursday.

"You get your adrenaline going a little bit, juices flowing, felt good," Mauer said. "I was a little sore from yesterday, as expected, but it was good to get out there."

At the plate, Mauer went 0-for-2 with a flyout to deep center field, and a scalding line drive hit directly to the third baseman.

Asked about his confidence level with the surgically-repaired knee, Mauer said, "I got out on the field, I think that's confidence enough."

"I felt good moving around, even when I hit the ball getting out of the box, it felt like I knew what I was doing compared to (Wednesday). So yeah, it was good."

The current plan is for Mauer to relax on Friday, in all likelihood, before donning the catchers gear on Saturday at Hammond Stadium against the Rays.

For the record, Mauer did say he feels good enough that he could probably catch Friday too, "but you've got to be smart about it."

Capps threw 33 pitches (11 balls, 22 strikes) to Mauer over two frames and struck out two. He did give up a run in the second inning after a double and a single, but the double was a lazy fly ball that fell between two Twins outfielders.

Phil Mackey is a columnist for 1500ESPN.com. He co-hosts "Mackey & Judd" from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. weekdays on 1500 ESPN Twin Cities.
Email Phil | @PhilMackey | Mackey & Judd
In this story: Matt Capps, Joe Mauer
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