Joe Mauer received his 2009 American League Most Valuable Player Award in a pregame ceremony at Target Field prior to a game against the Royals.
After missing the first 22 games of the 2009 season with a lower back injury, Mauer homered on his first swing back from the disabled list. He went on to hit 11 home runs and drive in 32 runs in the month of May. He set career-highs with 28 home runs and 96 RBI on the season, and won his third AL batting title with a .365 average, the best by a catcher in major league history.
The Twins won the Central Division in 2009 with a dramatic 12th-inning walk-off win in Game 163 versus Detroit, but were swept by the Yankees in the first round of the playoffs.
After receiving his trophy, Mauer went 2-for-4 with two RBI in the game. Jim Thome homered. Tied 5-5 in the seventh, Orlando Hudson led off the bottom of the inning with a home run, giving the Twins a 6-5 win.