Twins All-time ATTITUDE Team
There are some concerns that the Twins clubhouse in the past few years has been DULL!!! Many believe adding some fired-up, good attitude players would help. Here are my picks for the all-time ATTITUDE team, emphasizing good, dedicated and "different" personalities (but emphasizing the "different") and "characters":
First Base: Doug Mientkiewisz (even more than Hrbek)
Second Base: Alexi Casilla (one of two "loose cannons" according to Gardie)
Shortstop: Cristian Guzman (tough position to pick, Orlando Cabrera got fired up but that was during a very short stint)
Third Base: Corey Koskie (like Dougie Baseball, a very dedicated Twin, who even took a full page ad in the newspaper to thank the fans when he left for the Blue Jays)
Utility Infielder: Frank Quilici (for dedication to everything Twins) - Nick Punto is the runner-up
Outfield: Dan Gladden (drove over to Lombo's house to punch some sense into him), Carlos Gomez (the other loose cannon), Kirby Puckett (Get on my back!!! All-time King of the Locker Room) Killebrew and Cuddyer were just too nice to make the list - but it was tough leaving Disco Dan out of this.
Catcher: A.J Pierzynski (the easiest pick)
Starting RHP: Jack Morris (only one year, but shunned Tom Kelly and kept the ball in the 10th for the biggest game ever for a Twins pitcher) Blyleven had bad attitude when he left after his first stint and took away the sombrero on his second, so he's out. On the positive side Dave Boswell did get punched out by his manager, and Joe Niekro had the emory board, but Morris gets it))
Starting LHP: Johan Santana (Insisted he was good enough to start and then proved it as a multi-CyYoung-winner)
Set-Up Reliever: Juan Berenguer (so many possibilities, but the answer is obvious)
Closer: Eddie Guardado (for overall, longterm fired up attitude, his pre-pitching ritual and engaging personality) This is tough, however, Joe Nathan had fire on the mound, Jon Rauch and Jeff Reardon looked menacing. Rick Aguilera, however, was too nice to make this list.
Manager: Ron Gardenhire (willing to storm out of the dugout and had more longevity than runnerup Billy Martin - BUT look below)
Third Base Coach: Billy Martin - How can you leave him out of the all-attitude dugout.
Owner: Calvin Griffith - Old school baseball guy, even if he was a tightwad.