Twins catcher Joe Mauer back from injury

May 1, 2009 at 8:33 PM
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MINNEAPOLIS, May 1 (UPI) -- Two-time American League batting champion Joe Mauer was activated off Minnesota's 15-day disabled list Friday.

The veteran catcher suffered inflammation of the right sacroiliac joint, located at the base of each side of the spine, and part of his rehabilitation included five games with Single-A Fort Myers, Fla., where he went 6-for-15 with two doubles, four RBI and a .444 on-base percentage.

He his made his 2009 major league debut in Friday's game against Kansas City after missing the first month.

"Having Joe in front of me is important," slugger Justin Morneau told the Pioneer Press. "I keep telling him he needs to sign an extension because I don't really want to play on a team without him. I get a lot of information from what he does."

The Twins were 11-11 in April without Mauer's potent bat in their lineup. His .317 batting average since 2004 ties him for fourth among major league hitters with at least 1,000 at-bats during that span.

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