Mauer sans meniscus

Will Carroll reports that Twins catcher Joe Mauer, still known as the guy drafted ahead of Mark Prior for monetary reasons, had the medial meniscus in his left knee removed. Removed! When I tore my ACL and MCL, I tore my meniscus, but the doctors simply shaved down one tear and inserted a staple in another.
The medial meniscus is a wedge of cartilage that cushions the upper leg bone from the lower. For a catcher to have it removed...well, it's a bad omen for Mauer's career squatting behind the plate. Without much power, he'd be much less valuable at, say, 1B, though he could be a plus at 2B.
And speaking of Prior, I saw his first start back against the Pirates, and he was aces. Same Prior that was lights out in August and September of last year, and he even toseed in a few of his new changeup.