10 Things to be Thankful For: Minnesota Twins Edition
Image courtesy of Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports10. The 2020 Minnesota Twins got to play a season
In the midst of the worst global pandemic the nation has seen in a century, the Twins were able to play a baseball season. No, it didn’t look traditional and yes, the team may have underperformed. Yet at the end of the day baseball was played- something that we weren’t sure would happen back in March.
Baseball is great, but it is miniscule compared to health, player safety, and human life. While the MLB’s plan for 2020 was far from perfect, the Twins took guidelines seriously, stayed mostly healthy (from COVID), and were able to provide sports fans with a glimpse of light in a dark world.
9. Bigger than Baseball
Baseball is a game. Life, human safety, and social justice are not. 2020 was a year of hardship, unrest, and thought for the Minneapolis-St. Paul community and greater United States. Through all the tough times the Twins organization made it’s voice heard; baseball is more than just a game played on the field.
From messages on social justice to standing alongside the LGBTQ+ community and taking a stand against bullying, the Twins took a stand towards building a better tomorrow for the community. They knew that they would receive opposition and flack for not just “shutting up and dribbling,” but it didn’t matter. The Twins recognize that there are bigger things in life than sports and that using their platform to promote change is extremely important. That is something to be thankful for.
8. Rocco Baldelli is the Skipper of the Minnesota
In a league full of seasoned managers, Rocco Baldelli has put his best foot forward in his inaugural two seasons with the Twins. Not only has Rocco helped produce wins on the field, he’s an incredible PR figure for the Twins. A players' manager, Baldelli embodies everything that is great about Twins Territory. His classiness in interviews, refrain from belittling players/umpires/league officials, and frankly nice demeanor has won over the hearts of baseball fans.
Here’s to many more years of Baldelli leading the Twins and serving as an outstanding voice for Major League Baseball.
7. Caleb Thielbar
Randoph, Minnesota native Caleb Thielbar wasn’t supposed to “make it.” Yet with everything stacked against him, the lefty reliever faced adversity with an iron fist and had a career season with his home-state team.
Similar to Baldelli, Thielbar is one of those guys that it is impossible to cheer against. A small town kid who only had one Division 1 offer, Thielbar has been through the gauntlet of injuries, minor league stints, and being looked over. That hasn’t stopped him from becoming a fixture in the Twins organization. A genuinely great person, Thielbar’s ability to overcome adversity will help him not only in baseball, but more importantly, life.
Read: Minnesota Made: Caleb Thiebar
6. Target Field
It may not be “new” anymore but Target Field is drop dead gorgeous. Constantly ranked as one of the top ballparks in the league, Twins fans are blessed to watch their team play in an ageless venue that still feels ‘state of the art.’
Target Field has also made noise in the public sphere, being certified as a LEED Gold facility for it’s incredible sustainability and environmental practices. Die-hard Twins fans will watch their team wherever they play, but these “off the field” accolades draw more attention from the general public and expand the web of Twins Territory.
5. The Outfield (Not the 80’s Band)
While Eddie Rosario may be “on a vacation far away” in the near future, the Twins have been gifted with some of the finest outfield depth in Major League Baseball. Even when Byron Buxton has struggled with health, a myriad of other players have stepped up. Jake Cave could start on many other MLB teams, Brent Rooker hits the snot out of the baseball, and Alex Kirilloff is one of the brightest prospects in the league.
And while Kepler, Buxton, and Rosario may not have played out to what some imagined, they were still quite good. Even if these three aren’t patrolling the Target Field grass next summer, we can be incredibly thankful for the run that they had.
4. A Bright Future
Kirilloff and Rooker and Royce, oh my! The Twins have always had one of the strongest farm systems in the league. Yet today’s prospects in the organization present some of the finest untapped talent that the team has ever seen. Expect these three to make a big splash in the 2021 season.
And while he is no longer a prospect, Ryan Jeffers is an incredible young catcher that made his voice heard this season. Names like Edwar Colina, Travis Blankenhorn, and Trevor Larnach could also have a huge impact on the upcoming season.
3. Torii, Cuddy, and LeTroy
For the first time in a number of years the Minnesota Twins had three former players on the MLB Hall of Fame ballot. Torii Hunter, Michael Cuddyer, and LeTroy Hawkins graced Twins fans with incredible memories over a wealth of time and helped create a solid foundation for the future of the organization.
While it is unlikely that these three will make it in, there isn’t enough gratitude out there to thank these three for their contributions to the Minnesota Twins.
Watch: Seth Stohs interviews friends of Torii Hunter
2. Dick Bremer
Though his counterparts have come and gone through the years, it is safe to say that Dick Bremer is one of the most well-loved broadcasters in the game of baseball. A Minnesota native himself, Dick’s charismatic presence resonates to the living rooms of fans across the upper Midwest.
Charisma, communication skills, and baseball knowledge don’t always mutually exist. Thankfully, Bremer has all three of these and a genuine love for the Twins organization. We are all more passionate and knowledgeable baseball fans because of the work the Dick Bremer does every night.
1. The 10th Man, Woman, and Child
Being a Minnesota sports fan can be tough at times. And while Twins fans have seen success that other teams in the state haven’t, there is still a dose of heartbreak quite frequently. Yet the fans of this organization are as loyal as any and for the most part are quality, genuine people. It’s one of the biggest reasons why the folks at Twins Daily love what they do and continue to do it.
It isn’t always easy, especially in these times, but keep the faith in your Minnesota Twins! We’re all in this together!
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