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Minnesota Twins Talk Today, 12:40 AM
After a 12 inning game and the White Sox using a bullpen game, it looked like the Twins’ offense would have some fun at the plate tonight...
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The Minnesota Twins have one of the greatest offensive teams ever assembled (put that into sentences that would’ve seemed crazy in March)...
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Game Thread: Twins vs. White Sox, 9/18/19 @ 6:40pm CT

Minnesota Twins Talk Yesterday, 10:26 PM
  Good afternoon and welcome back to another exciting game thread! After last nights win I'd prefer this game just go a standard 9...
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Front Page: Mission Accomplished: An Elite Twins Bullpen

Minnesota Twins Talk Yesterday, 11:41 PM
As the month of July came to an end, Minnesota Twins fans watched with anticipation hoping that their club was going to make the necessar...
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Front Page: Make Every Night "Obscure Twins Jersey...

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Maybe you got carried away with Tsuyoshi Nishioka. Maybe you (okay, me) were a little too excited about Jeff Cirillo. Maybe you bought a...
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The Best Twins Team Since...

Most people are running out of superlatives for the 2019 version of the Minnesota Twins. The club is an eye-popping 20 games over .500 and they sit atop the AL Central by 10 games. Everything seems to be clicking with a power-packed line-up. Pitchers are having career years. Even a bullpen full of cast-offs seems to be clicking on all cylinders.

With Minnesota continuing to steamroll inferior opponents, one must wonder what this team can achieve? Is this one of the best Twins teams of all-time?
Image courtesy of Jennifer Buchanan-USA TODAY Sports
First World Series Run
Since the club moved to Minnesota, the 1965 squad was the lone team to win over 100 games. With a 102-60 record (.630 W-L%), the team also has the highest winning percentage of any Twins team. During the 2019 campaign, the Twins have a .692 W-L%. It seems unlikely for the club to continue on that pace but it seems like they could get to 103 wins.

Minnesota’s line-up that season featured greats like Harmon Killebrew, Tony Olivia, Bob Allison, and Earl Battey. Shortstop Zoilo Versalles would be named the AL MVP. The rotation consisted of some strong arms as well. Mudcast Grant, Jim Kaat and Jim Perry all had sub-3.30 ERAs, while Kaat and Grant combined to pitch over 534 innings.

The Twins ran into the Dodgers and Sandy Koufax in the World Series, which stopped the club from being a champion. Still the 1965 team, might be one of the best teams from top to bottom.

Baltimore Blues Teams
Two of Minnesota’s best team contenders also fell short of their World Series goal. Both the 1969 and 1970 squads were able to qualify for the ALCS. Unfortunately, the Baltimore Orioles made quick work of the Twins in both years.

Jim Perry was in quite the two-year stretch for being in his age-33 and age-34 seasons. He led the team in WAR in 1969 but he was actually awarded the AL Cy Young in 1970. In these two seasons, he combined to have a 44-18 record with a 2.93 ERA and 1.16 WHIP. He averaged 270 innings pitched and along with 160 strikeouts per season.

Tony Oliva’s best professional season was in 1970. He 7.0 WAR led the team. He also led the American League in hits and doubles. Killebrew was also in the prime of his Hall of Fame career. Between the two seasons, he hit 90 home runs. Killebrew would take home the 1969 MVP. Oliva would finish second in the MVP voting one year later.

World Series Wins
Minnesota’s first World Series winning club didn’t exactly have a stellar regular season. The 1987 Twins finished the regular season at 85-77, which was two games better than the Royals. If the Twins were in the AL East that year, their record would have placed them fifth.

The Tigers had trounced through the AL East that year with a 98-64 record, but the Twins were able to dispose of them in five games. Minnesota had to go to seven games against the Cardinals, but they won every game in the Metrodome to clinch the title. Frank Viola was the MVP and a poor regular season record was long forgotten.

Minnesota’s second World Series winning club managed a better regular season than the first. They finished the year at 95-67, which was the best record in the American League. Do you know who lead the team in WAR that year? According to Baseball Reference, Kevin Tapani, Shane Mack, and Scott Erickson were the team’s top three players.

For many, the 1991 World Series is considered the best Fall Classic of all-time. There were three extra-inning games including both games six and seven. Five of the seven games were decided by one run or less. All Twins fans know how this one ended. Puckett ended Game 6 and Morris dominated in Game 7.

Metrodome Era
Minnesota won the division five times from 2002-2009 with Ron Gardenhire at the helm. The 2002 club was deemed “The Team that Saved Baseball.” While that club shocked many by making the ALCS, the 2006 club might have been the best club in the Metrodome era.

On the mound, Minnesota had the best one-two punch in the game. Johan Santana was in a stretch of being the best pitcher in the game. To join him, a young Francisco Liriano was showing he had the stuff to be among the league’s best. Liriano tried to pitch through pain in August but by November he was scheduled for Tommy John surgery. It’s hard to imagine any team that would have been able to beat Santana and Liriano multiple times in a seven-game series. Not to mention, Joe Nathan was anchoring the backend of a solid bullpen.

At the plate, Joe Mauer was putting it all together at the big-league level. He won his first batting title, his first Silver Slugger, and he was an All-Star for the first time. Justin Morneau would be named the American League MVP as he beat out the likes of Derek Jeter, David Ortiz, and Frank Thomas.

For many, Liriano’s injury cost the Twins a shot at World Series title.

How good is the current team? Is it better than the 2006 squad? Is it better than the World Series clubs? Leave a COMMENT and start the discussion.


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21 Comments

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FlauerPauer
May 27 2019 06:53 PM

There's over 100 games left in the season. Let's save this conversation for the offseason. Let's say they in 110 games and win the world series. Would be the best team of Twin history. Let's say they flop the rest of the year and only get to 85-88 wins. No one cares. Let's just enjoy the season so far and hopefully continue to enjoy this season.

    • adjacent likes this
Yeah. I won’t bite, either. Essentially asking how we think this team will project through the playoffs. After one-third of the season, we don’t know.
The 2006 Twins were 12.5 games back of the Tigers on May 27th.

The 2012 As were 13 games back on June 30th.

The 2014 Dodgers were 10 back on June 8th.

The 2013 Dodgers were 9.5 back on June 22nd.

The 1978 Yankees were 14 games back on July 20th.

The 1995 Mariners were 13 back on August 3rd.

These teams all won their division (and, no, the last two aren’t typos).

This thing ain’t over, folks.

As I type this Taylor Rodgers gives up a 2 run HR to spit up the lead against the Dodgers in the 8th....to Oswaldo Arcia’s brother.
    • Dantes929 likes this
Concur. They are looking good but this is a topic for October. This pitching staff (especially the bullpen) still has plenty of downside

 

The 2006 Twins were 12.5 games back of the Tigers on May 27th.

The 2012 As were 13 games back on June 30th.

The 2014 Dodgers were 10 back on June 8th.

The 2013 Dodgers were 9.5 back on June 22nd.

The 1978 Yankees were 14 games back on July 20th.

The 1995 Mariners were 13 back on August 3rd.

These teams all won their division (and, no, the last two aren’t typos).

This thing ain’t over, folks.

As I type this Taylor Rodgers gives up a 2 run HR to spit up the lead against the Dodgers in the 8th....to Oswaldo Arcia’s brother.

I don't see the Indians making an against-the-odds rally to win the division.

 

Still, that doesn't mean the Twins are going to have a great rest of the season. They could easily lose steam and make a quick exit from the playoffs.

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TheLeviathan
May 27 2019 10:57 PM

It's been the most fun I've had through May since the early 2000s.That's about all I'm willing to say right now.

    • spanman2, mplsman, jkcarew and 1 other like this

 

First World Series Run
Since the club moved to Minnesota, the 1965 squad was the lone team to win over 100 games. With a 102-60 record (.630 W-L%), the team also has the highest winning percentage of any Twins team. During the 2019 campaign, the Twins have a .692 W-L%. It seems unlikely for the club to continue on that pace but it seems like they could get to 103 wins.

Minnesota’s line-up that season featured greats like Harmon Killebrew, Tony Olivia, Bob Allison, and Earl Battey. Shortstop Zoilo Versalles would be named the AL MVP. The rotation consisted of some strong arms as well. Mudcast Grant, Jim Kaat and Jim Perry all had sub-3.30 ERAs, while Kaat and Grant combined to pitch over 534 innings.

The Twins ran into the Dodgers and Sandy Koufax in the World Series, which stopped the club from being a champion. Still the 1965 team, might be one of the best teams from top to bottom.


How good is the current team? Is it better than the 2006 squad? Is it better than the World Series clubs? Leave a COMMENT and start the discussion.

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I see similarities with the 1965 Twins, which I believe was the best ever. 

 

I agree with some of the prior posters who say that it's too soon to tell for sure, but I think that there are signs that this year's team might be the best ever and that it would be fun to discuss that.

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theBOMisthebomb
May 28 2019 04:18 AM
Too soon, it's not even June 1. My hope us that this is a precursor to a nice 5+ run of relevancy, multiple World Series appearances, and at least 1-2 titles. 2019 has been a fun run so far, nowhere near satisfying and they have accomplished nothing. Much work yet to be done.
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diehardtwinsfan
May 28 2019 05:42 AM

fun fact about the 1991 Twins. The last place team in their division was the Angles who also had a .500 record. 

 

That was a pretty good team... 

    • glunn, WLFINN and Nine of twelve like this
Sorry Cody...this made me laugh, from the paragraph on the 91 WS:

"Five of the seven games were decided by one run or less."
    • ashbury, glunn, Dantes929 and 3 others like this
Inconceivable

 

    • glunn and twinssporto like this

I agree it is too early to count on post-season even, let alone talking about an all time great team.They are performing well ahead of expectations.That being said, the fact that the line up is so balanced and putting up runs I do not see long time slumps that can crush teams.Each player, except for Polonco has had some stretch of bad hitting, but unless most of them have slump at same time I expect they will stay away from long losing streaks.  

 

The fact they still have plenty of games against Royals, Sox, and Tigers, I expect plenty of wins.If Cleveland does not see turn around soon, they may sell off a few of their pitchers, they were not adding to team in off season I do not expect big moves to make them better, so they will have to improve internally first, and Twins will have to falter. 

    • glunn likes this

This 2019 Twins squad is better than both the '87 or '92 teams that won the Series. Unfortunately, the Astros are better than either of those teams, too. Also, the Yankees at full strength will be damn good, the Dodgers are still powerful, the Blue Jays could shock the world with a couple superstar rookies, and the Red Sox have a dangerous team. 

 

Today's Twins have excellent hitting up and down the lineup, solid starters, and surprisingly good relievers. Last night their best reliever Rogers coughed up a one-run lead after Pineda's solid start. Then Miguel Sano opted for three home run swings in a situation that called for a line drive base hit, allowing Sader to throw his riding fastball over Sano's bat. Whiff, whiff, whiff. 

 

What was irritating about Sano's AB was that he was right on time with his swing, but he wanted to be a hero with the big old uppercut, so he whiffed out of an opportunity to tie the game. That's a mental error, but fortunately it's correctable. Sano needs to learn that he doesn't have to carry this team, it's got plenty of power hitters. Get the much easier single, and your team is still in the ballgame. 

    • glunn likes this
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mickeymental
May 28 2019 12:33 PM

appropriate adage for approaching the season's 1/3 point: hope for the best, prepare for the worst. 

    • glunn likes this

So far it has been a lot of fun watching this club play ball.I expect them to continue to play well.My simple mind has always said you need to get to at least Father's Day to have a real gauge of where you are at.We are about 3 weeks away from that.Such a long season to be certain.Let's continue to enjoy the great baseball.

    • glunn likes this

As of today, this is the best Twins start since 2001. I expect this team will fare better than that team did, but I don't want to compare this team to the 60s Twins dynasty yet.

    • glunn likes this

The easy schedule should be pointed out.20 of our 54 games (37%) have been against teams with a record of .500 or better.We are currently 10-10 in those games (7-8 excluding the Indians).

 

That and how early it is, I would say it is only safe to say the best team since 2010.

 

This 2019 Twins squad is better than both the '87 or '92 teams that won the Series.

 

No.

At this point we can confidently say that this is The Best Twins Team Since 2017.

    • glunn, diehardtwinsfan and Doomtints like this
I think it's difficult to compare these teams to the 2002-2009 era teams and still a long ways to go before the postseason to draw any conclusions. It's late May so way way too early yet, but I think should the front office make some moves to solidify the bullpen and possibly add a starter this team could make some noise in the post season. I'm cautiously optimistic.
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twinssporto
May 29 2019 10:20 PM

Offensively this is the best Twins team I've ever seen. That doesn't necessarly correlate to a WS championship but it sure as hell makes them more fun to watch.

 

I'm not an actuary but I'd also assume their chances of going deep into the playoffs this year are a lot better than 25+ teams in the league now.

 

Twinssporto

CEO & Founder

Minnesota Twins 2019 World Series Champions Fan Club  


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