Joe Mauer, still feeling effects from concussion, has no return date
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MINNEAPOLIS -- Joe Mauer's status is still up in the air as he attempts to return from a concussion suffered during the Twins one-game makeup versus the New York Mets last Monday.
Mauer said he's steadily improving when he addressed the media Thursday morning, but still remains without a recovery timeline.
"I've been feeling better," Mauer said. "It's good to be here at the park with the guys. Yesterday, I started some light exercises, trying to get moving again. I haven't been able to do a whole lot the last week or so. It was a good day just getting into those types of things."
Mauer described his symptoms as sensitivity to light and sound, though they seem to be diminishing with each passing day, he said. "Doing things yesterday, I'm definitely conscious of how I'm feeling," Mauer said. "I might start an exercise, take a break, and see where I'm at. It's been going good, hopefully I'll have a good day today."
The other odd note was that Mauer said he didn't feel any effects until well after the initial blows to his helmet during the Mets game Monday.
"I took a couple foul tips off the head and didn't feel any different," Mauer said. "The second one -- in the seventh inning -- got me pretty good. I was able to finish the game and feel fine. Afterwards, I got on the plane, did my normal thing, got to Comerica on Tuesday, and still felt fine. I even came and talked to the media about concussion symptoms and said I didn't have those."
But as manager Ron Gardenhire indicated in previous days, it was Tuesday during batting practice when Mauer was taking grounders at first when Mauer began experiencing symptoms.
"As soon as I got out to first to field groundballs and move around, that's when it kind of hit me," Mauer said. "[My] balance was off, and the ball seemed like it was getting on me quick. Then I started getting irritated by sound and light."
"It was a rough couple days in Detroit."
Mauer thought he may also have had a concussion when he was 10 or 11, but has never had any lingering symptoms like this.
Mauer said that while he's had some communication with fellow teammates formerly concussed, each situation is so different that there isn't a lot of common ground.
"We've spoken a little bit," Mauer said of his chats with Morneau, who had parts of two seasons wiped out with post-concussive effects. "Even Ryan (Doumit) and Wilkin (Ramirez), we've had some guys who have gone through this, and I'm experiencing a lot of the same things like they have. Also, everyone is different. Morny's been dealing with it a long time; Ryan was able to come back soon. Hopefully I can come back soon, too."
Mauer can't say when he'll be back, and he said it's driving him mad just like it likely is the fans.
"You really can't (put a date on it); it'll probably drive me nuts trying to figure it out," Mauer said. "(I'm) trying to get back as soon as I can. It's not any fun watching, so hopefully I'll be back soon. I think what's scary about it is it's not like a turned ankle, where it'd be a day or two or you can tape it up; you can't tape your head. I wish you could. But just trying to do what they ask me to do, and hopefully I can get out there soon."
General manager Terry Ryan on Thursday wouldn't rule out that Mauer could join the team at some point on the upcoming road trip.
Ryan added that his hope is that Mauer will return as a catcher. "That's his position," Ryan said. "You can get hurt on a baseball field no matter where you go. We've been through this before with Justin, who couldn't get comfortable DH-ing."