FORT MYERS, Fla. -- Twins catcher Joe Mauer has yet to catch a bullpen session this spring, and he might not be catching right away when the club's Grapefruit League schedule kicks off on Sunday, either. Twins manager Ron Gardenhire revealed Tuesday that Mauer had received a shot in his surgically repaired left knee, as he added that the team will continue to be cautious with Mauer's workload this spring while the catcher works his way back from offseason knee surgery. General manager Bill Smith confirmed that Mauer received a shot of medicine on Tuesday to help lubricate his knee joint. Smith said the club will proceed slowly with the All-Star catcher during Wednesday's first full-squad workout before "getting him back to full speed on Thursday."
"I want to make sure those things take effect," Gardenhire said of the shot. "He's feeling a lot better. You can see him moving and feeling great and we want to keep it that way. So we're going to kind of guard him and back him off, and we'll eventually get him in the ballgames, too." Mauer has been taking part in the Twins' daily workouts since pitchers and catchers reported on Thursday, but the club has limited how much he's been squatting behind the plate. Gardenhire said the club will continue to limit Mauer's catching duties in the full-squad workouts this week and likely for a short time beyond that. "I'm not thinking that he's going to be catching in the games right away, either," said Gardenhire. "I'm just going to bide my time with that and make sure we get him in situations and get him ready. It's more important for him to see the pitchers on the side, a few bullpens on the side, but I want to make sure we clean that knee up before we get anything going."