Joe Mauer’s fiancé is a nurse in the Twin Cities. He and Madeline Bisanz have known each other since high school at Cretin-Derham Hall. The two have been in Florida but will be back in Minnesota for the holidays. No wedding date has been set for Madeline and the Twins catcher who once dated the 2005 Miss USA, Chelsea Cooley.
Next season needs to be a comeback year on the field for Mauer but it’s even bigger for his buddy, first baseman Justin Morneau. Injuries have slowed Morneau for two seasons and production has been far below his best years (in 2011 four home runs, 30 RBI and a .227 batting average). He turns 31 in May and 2013 is the last year of his contract with the Twins.
Joe’s brother Jake Mauer will return for a third year as manager of the Twins Single-A affiliate Ft. Myers Miracle (Florida State League).
The Saints franchise that comes to Mall of America Field on Sunday to play the Vikings beat Minnesota in the NFC Championship Game on January 24, 2010. Since then the Saints are 21-8 in regular season games, the Vikings 8-21.
The Minnesota Football Coaches Association’s annual clinic with the Gophers is March 29-31. Coaches interested in attending can learn more at www.mshsca.org.
New Timberwolves coach Rick Adelman has only four teams in 20 seasons of NBA coaching who didn’t make the playoffs. Twice his teams have been in the NBA Finals.
In five seasons playing in the Spanish ACB League, new Timberwolves guard Ricky Rubio made .374 percent of his field goals and .314 of his three point attempts. Although he’s only 21, Rubio’s shooting and defense will be scrutinized in the early weeks of the NBA season.
Last summer Rubio treated a north Minneapolis family, who had been impacted by tornadoes, to an afternoon at the Mall of America.
Saint John’s head coach Jim Smith has 731 career wins, the 21st best total in college basketball history. Smith is 10 wins behind former Temple coach John Chaney.
The Wild will never have a better goalie storyline during the first months of the season than this year. Training camp opened with the comfort of having six-year veteran and regular goalie Niklas Backstrom on the roster. But backup Josh Harding has probably been the team MVP while supporting roles have been played by 51-year-old “emergency” goalie Paul Deutsch and Matt Hackett who didn’t make his first start until December 8. On Monday Hackett was named by the NHL as its Second Star for the week after a 2-0, 1.01 goals against average last week.
The Wild’s Devin Setoguchi is scheduled to sign autographs at the Maplewood Mall Hockey Lodge store on Friday from 6 to 7 p.m. The store is located at 3001 White Bear Avenue in Maplewood.