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Joe Mauer hitched a ride to KC on the Rangers' plane

By Meggie Zahneis/MLB.com

Joe Mauer’s plane ride to the All-Star Game was probably more memorable than most.

Going into the break, Mauer’s Twins wrapped up a series with Texas at Rangers Ballpark in Arlington with a tough 4-3 loss.

The Rangers had eight All-Stars headed to Kansas City -- Mike Napoli, Josh Hamilton, Yu Darvish, Matt Harrison, Joe Nathan, Elvis Andrus and Ian Kinsler -- plus American League manager Ron Washington.

With all nine, plus Texas executives and aides, in need of a ride, Texas charted a private plane to KC. And, in a goodwill gesture, they invited Mauer to tag along.

The catcher accepted.

“I actually hitched a ride with the Rangers,” Mauer admitted. “We played Texas and we got in pretty late and we’re pretty tired.  It was a little different, but we made it here safely.

“We lost in extra innings.  I think everybody was so tired and anxious to get here that it was okay.”

Meggie Zahneis, winner of the 2011 Breaking Barriers essay contest, earned the job of youth correspondent for MLB.com in the fall of '11.