Joe Mauer to throw, test orthotics to help injured heel
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The Minnesota Twins' All-Star catcher said this morning he continues to feel better each day and was relieved when an MRI on Tuesday revealed a deep tissue bruise and nothing more significant.
But Mauer isn't putting any timeline on his return, five days after he hurt the heel running out a ground ball in Kansas City.
"I want to be out there," Mauer said. "I have to be smart about it, too. But ... this is new to me. So, I wish I could tell you this is the day I'm going to be out and everything would be fine, but I can't because I don't know."
Mauer put on cleats Tuesday for the first time in days and walked around the dugout.
"That's one the things I've got to do," he said, "is just try to walk and keep it loose."
The next step is making sure his arm stays in shape and then trying out the shoes Nike is shipping him. He said he's expecting some new arrivals today.
Wilson Ramos will make his fourth consecutive start this afternoon against Detroit.
Asked in jest if he's worried about losing his job to the rookie, Mauer said, "I don't know -- he's played pretty good. To come in and do what he's done to help us win. I thought he did a great job last night behind the plate, getting (Nick Blackburn) through that game, and he's been doing really well. That's good to see."
UPDATE, 11:03 a.m.: Manager Ron Gardenhire said Mauer also will take some swings in the batting cage today. But Gardenhire continued to say he'll proceed cautiously with his star.
"You can't let it linger on," Gardenhire said. "You get back out there and all of a sudden reinjure it, and then stay sore, and then you're a month into this thing and he's still fighting a sore heel. ...
"We're just going to take our time here. We've got the third catcher (Ramos) up here, and we're going to take our time with tihs. I'm going to have to rely on Joe -- I can't tell him how he's feeling. I've also relayed to him that I want this thing to be healed before we do go through something and get him back out there."