The Joe Mauer detractors are losing ammunition in 2012, though perhaps not at the same rate they are losing steam.

He's been far more durable this season than in 2011, even if critics will note that roughly half of his at-bats have come at a position other than catcher. He went into Monday leading the American League in on-base percentage (.414). Overall, his numbers this season are about in line with his career stats -- and for a guy who has won three batting titles and an MVP award, that is typically a good thing.

Mauer will never please those who think he should hit for more power. And he might never hit 28 home runs in a season again. But if we're talking about near-guarantees when it comes to driving the anti-Mauer folks crazy, we're talking about this long-term issue: money.