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Twins Birthdays--April 16

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Rich Rollins (1938)
Bernie Allen (1939)
Garry Roggenburk (1940)

Third baseman Richard John Rollins played for the Minnesota Twins from 1961-1968. He was born in Mount Pleasant, Pennsylvania, went to high school in Parma, Ohio, attended Kent State, and signed with Washington as a free agent in 1960. He spent less than two years in the minors, coming up to what was now the Minnesota Twins for a couple of months in 1961 and making the team to stay out of spring training in 1962. He made the all-star team in his first full major league season, hitting .298 with 16 home runs. Rollins finished eighth in MVP voting that year. 1963 was just as good, as Rollins hit .307, again hitting 16 homers and again receiving some MVP consideration. He fell off some after that, and after hitting .249 in 1965 Rollins fell to part-time status, sharing time at third with Harmon Killebrew from 1966-1968. He was left unprotected in the expansion draft after the 1968 season and was chosen by the Seattle Pilots. He had a poor year as a part-time player in 1969 and was released by the now Milwaukee Brewers in May of 1970. He signed with Cleveland, finished the year there, and his playing career came to an end. As a Twin, he hit .272/.333/.394 in 3,048 at-bats stretching over eight seasons. After leaving baseball, he worked for the Cleveland Cavaliers for a while. At last report, Rich Rollins was living in Akron, Ohio.


Second baseman Bernard Keith Allen played for the Twins from 1962-1966. Born and raised in East Liverpool, Ohio, he attended Purdue, where he was also the quarterback on the football team, and signed with Minnesota as a free agent in 1961. He had a rather undistinguished 1961 season at Class A Charlotte, but in 1962 he was the Twins’ regular second baseman. He did surprisingly well, hitting .269 with 12 homers and finishing third in Rookie of the Year voting. That would turn out to be his best year in the majors. He fell to .240 in 1963, and a knee injury in 1964 which would bother him the rest of his career turned him into a part-time player, with Jerry Kindall seeing significant time at second base. In 1965 he fell even further, spending much of the year at AAA Denver. He was back with the Twins in 1966, this time sharing second base with Cesar Tovar, but his batting never really came back, and after the season he was traded to Washington with Camilo Pascual for Ron Kline. Allen had an awful year in 1967, but came back to relative mediocrity for the next three seasons, in which he was the mostly regular for the Senators at second base. He fell to part-time status in 1971, but rebounded to a .266 batting average, his best since his rookie year. After the season, Allen was traded to the Yankees. He was a reserve infielder there until mid-August of 1973, when he was sold to Montreal. He was released after the 1973 season, ending his playing career. As a Twin, he hit.246/.316/.366 in 1,595 at-bats stretching over five seasons. At last report, Bernie Allen was living in Carmel, Indiana and was working part-time at a golf course there.


Left-handed reliever Garry Earl Roggenburk was with the Twins in 1963, 1965-1966. Born and raised in Cleveland, he attended the University of Dayton. He played basketball as well as baseball, leading his team to the NIT championship in 1962 (he still holds the school record with 32 rebounds in one game). He was drafted by the San Francisco Warriors, but signed with Minnesota as a free agent in 1962. He had a tremendous season as a starter in 1962 at Class A Erie, and was in the majors at the start of 1963. He was not worked very hard, but pitched well when given a chance, going 2-4, 2.16 in 50 innings. He did not play in 1964 for reasons that are not clear. Roggenburk started 1965 in AAA Denver, pitched well there, and was back in the big leagues by mid-July. He was again used sparingly but pitched well, going 1-0, 3.43 in 21 innings. He again started 1966 in Denver and was seldom used when he returned to the majors. Finally, since they weren’t using him, the Twins sold Roggenburk to Boston in September of 1966. As a Twin, Garry Roggenburk was 4-6, 3.02. He pitched in 60 games, two of them starts, and pitched 83.1 innings. He had a fine year in AAA Toronto in 1967, mostly used as a starting pitcher. He started 1968 in Boston and pitched well in four outings, but was apparently injured, as he made only four more appearances in AAA the rest of the season. He began 1969 with Boston, but was sold to the Seattle Pilots in late June. Roggenburk finished the season there, and then his playing career came to an end. He did some coaching after that, working in the Red Sox’ organization. He was the general manager of the Winter Haven Red Sox from 1978-1983. He then became a real estate appraiser in Cleveland, an occupation he stuck with until he retired. He is a member of the University of Dayton Hall of Fame. At last report, Garry Roggenburk was living in Avon, Ohio.
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