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What Player Made You Fall in Love With the Twins?


Andrew Mahlke
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11 minutes ago, Longdistancetwins said:

Yeah, the pleasant surprise when they handed the shortstop job to Danny Thompson in 1972 was seeing that he could indeed hit—especially when  shortstops weren’t expected to.  He became a favorite player for me at that point.

wRC+ is adjusted relative to your peers (position, season, etc) Thompson in 1972 had a 99, 100 being average relative to his peers, he had one league average season. Every season outside of ‘72 was slightly below average to terrible, so no… he couldn’t hit, but that’s not important.

What is important, is that Thompson made an impact on you, brought you closer to the game, that eventually brought you here where we all benefit from you being a member of our community.

so thanks to Danny Thompson for flashing the leather and instilling the love of baseball into Twins fans of the 70s and giving us all something to talk about in these bleak times.

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On 12/16/2021 at 9:49 PM, ashbury said:

I moved to the Twin Cities late in the season, August 1978, so Rod Carew didn't really get a chance to register profoundly.  He made his mark for me more from the trade, and I tried desperately hard to root for Dave Engle, Paul Hartzell, Brad Havens and Ken Landreaux that next season but it didn't quite work out.  Bob Casey announcing BOM-bo Ri-VER-a was supposed to be a hint about whom to be excited about, but that didn't take for me, either.  It was great to have Koosman to root for - you almost felt like the Twins FO was trying - but fall in love, not quite.  It was a dreary era to have chosen to adopt the team.

The article asks about love.  Love is a tricky thing. 

 

I get this:  I’ve been a Twins fan since 1967, but the teams I paid least attention to were those of the late 1970s and 1980.  Ironically, all the attention paid to the “Terrible Twins” of 1982 revived my interest, so I could fall in love early with that core.  

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32 minutes ago, USAFChief said:

Although I answered this with Tony O, I should also mention Herb Carneal.

 

Herb wasn't a player, but he is a big part of my Twins Fandom. Always there. Every spring, summer and fall. Perhaps more "the Twins" than any player ever.

Matches my experience to a tee.

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9 hours ago, USAFChief said:

Although I answered this with Tony O, I should also mention Herb Carneal.

 

Herb wasn't a player, but he is a big part of my Twins Fandom. Always there. Every spring, summer and fall. Perhaps more "the Twins" than any player ever.

I couldn't agree more.  I have so many great memories of listening to Herb while fishing on beautiful summer nights.  Thank you for mentioning Herb.

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On 12/15/2021 at 11:10 PM, Andrew Mahlke said:

Everyone has a player or a team that sparked their love for Twins baseball. For my dad's generation, it was Kirby Puckett. A player who played with passion and delivered many clutch moments to bring the Twins two championships.

For me, it was Joe Mauer. As a kid who loved everything to do with baseball growing up in the suburbs of the Twin Cities, I looked up to Mauer in just about every way. I saw a homegrown kid who was the star player on the team that I loved. My first year getting into the Twins was 2008, when I was six years old. My dad started taking me to Twins games and would always put them on the TV in hopes that I would share his love for baseball. It worked. Soon, I was watching every game and my favorite player was the AL Batting Champ, Joe Mauer. The next year, Mauer won MVP and I loved it. I was hooked.

On a great site like Twins Daily, there are people of all ages. So I am interested to hear: who was the player that sparked your love for the Twins?

Tony Oliva. Even though Rod Carew is my favorite Twin ever.

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14 hours ago, USAFChief said:

Although I answered this with Tony O, I should also mention Herb Carneal.

Herb wasn't a player, but he is a big part of my Twins Fandom. Always there. Every spring, summer and fall. Perhaps more "the Twins" than any player ever.

Love this so much. I didn't hear Herb often - I was a kid that lived in northern Minnesota and later moved to Utah - but I understand the sentiment. While I now love the Twins first and foremost, I grew up in a world where I loved baseball and just listened to whatever I could get, and that was often Jack Buck's voice until I moved to Utah and ESPN took over and made me ignore the airwaves.

But I heard Jack Buck far more than I ever heard Herb and I lived in Minnesota and northern Wisconsin as a child.

The world was a weird place in the 70s and 80s.

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3 hours ago, RJA said:

I couldn't agree more.  I have so many great memories of listening to Herb while fishing on beautiful summer nights.  Thank you for mentioning Herb.

I was gonna list Herb Carneal. He is my real answer. From the first time I heard him in 1973, I was hooked. Herb taught me the game on a whole new level.The string is out! A pleasant good evening to you from here at the Big A in Anaheim! 

I remember his partner, Larry Calton, saying, "Man oh man oh man" after a majestic home run. Probably from Bobby Darwin!

There’s never been another announcer in baseball that I loved so much!

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What a great sampler you have created - when this is about to wrap up create a graph and see who got the most votes.   It would seem that Harmon, Kirby and Tony are the leaders, but that is just a quick glance.

My players were on the Milwaukee Braves.  Before there were Twins my family made its annual pilgrimage to Milwaukee for a series against the Dodger (Koufax and Drysdale dodgers) and I grew up with such a fan connection to Aaron, Mathews, and Spahn that I could not separate them.

Then the Twins came and my favorite for his brief Twins career was Vic Power.  In 1962 he hit 290/313/412, but what I remembered most was his glove.  He is still my standard for 1B, 

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On 12/15/2021 at 11:10 PM, Andrew Mahlke said:

Everyone has a player or a team that sparked their love for Twins baseball. For my dad's generation, it was Kirby Puckett. A player who played with passion and delivered many clutch moments to bring the Twins two championships.

For me, it was Joe Mauer. As a kid who loved everything to do with baseball growing up in the suburbs of the Twin Cities, I looked up to Mauer in just about every way. I saw a homegrown kid who was the star player on the team that I loved. My first year getting into the Twins was 2008, when I was six years old. My dad started taking me to Twins games and would always put them on the TV in hopes that I would share his love for baseball. It worked. Soon, I was watching every game and my favorite player was the AL Batting Champ, Joe Mauer. The next year, Mauer won MVP and I loved it. I was hooked.

On a great site like Twins Daily, there are people of all ages. So I am interested to hear: who was the player that sparked your love for the Twins?

Harmon Killebrew

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15 minutes ago, The professor said:

Brad Radke. He was the only good player on countless awful Twins teams. I've tried to make the argument that he should have his number retired by the Twins, mainly because he has a higher career war than Jack Morris, but it seems it will never happen.

Great first post! Keep posting!

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Miguel Sano. I only really started taking interest in baseball in 2019, and when he was hitting the juiced ball under the mentorship of Nelson Cruz I thought he was on the cusp of superstardom. Plus he's huge and looks interesting. He hasn't lived up to my expectations, but I'd be lying if I said I started following the Twins for someone more worthy like Buxton, Berrios, or Cruz himself.

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On 12/17/2021 at 1:19 PM, Sconnie said:

I had to lookup Danny Thompson - 28 wRC+ that year... that must have been serious leather to overcome swinging a pool noodle at the dish

I pondered your comments for awhile and have wondered how it is that when I think about my first exposure to the Twins, On a team with 5 Hall of Famers, I think of Danny Thompson. As you have pointed out Danny Thompson’s stats are not that good (Nick Punto was a lot better as a glove first player). 
 

Here is my explanation. I started listening to the Twins as a 9 year old while helping my family with chores growing up on a dairy farm in Southern Minnesota, near New Ulm. I envisioned the game through the eyes and voices of Herb Carneal and Halsie Hall. (Ray Christenson was also an announcer, but I don’t remember him). If Danny Thompson left a memorable impression on me it is because Mr Carneal and Hall made it so. I have looked for articles that touch upon what Danny Thompson meant to the Twins. The best answer I can give is that he was a great clubhouse teammate with a lot of grit. The following article touches upon some of this. 
 

https://www.oklahoman.com/article/5466464/remembering-danny-thompson-an-osu-cowboy-the-twins-could-never-forget/amp
 

 

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25 minutes ago, Eris said:

I pondered your comments for awhile and have wondered how it is that when I think about my first exposure to the Twins, On a team with 5 Hall of Famers, I think of Danny Thompson. As you have pointed out Danny Thompson’s stats are not that good (Nick Punto was a lot better as a glove first player). 
 

Here is my explanation. I started listening to the Twins as a 9 year old while helping my family with chores growing up on a dairy farm in Southern Minnesota, near New Ulm. I envisioned the game through the eyes and voices of Herb Carneal and Halsie Hall. (Ray Christenson was also an announcer, but I don’t remember him). If Danny Thompson left a memorable impression on me it is because Mr Carneal and Hall made it so. I have looked for articles that touch upon what Danny Thompson meant to the Twins. The best answer I can give is that he was a great clubhouse teammate with a lot of grit. The following article touches upon some of this. 
 

https://www.oklahoman.com/article/5466464/remembering-danny-thompson-an-osu-cowboy-the-twins-could-never-forget/amp
 

 

THIS! This is what baseball is all about!

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28 minutes ago, Eris said:

I pondered your comments for awhile and have wondered how it is that when I think about my first exposure to the Twins, On a team with 5 Hall of Famers, I think of Danny Thompson. As you have pointed out Danny Thompson’s stats are not that good (Nick Punto was a lot better as a glove first player). 
 

Here is my explanation. I started listening to the Twins as a 9 year old while helping my family with chores growing up on a dairy farm in Southern Minnesota, near New Ulm. I envisioned the game through the eyes and voices of Herb Carneal and Halsie Hall. (Ray Christenson was also an announcer, but I don’t remember him). If Danny Thompson left a memorable impression on me it is because Mr Carneal and Hall made it so. I have looked for articles that touch upon what Danny Thompson meant to the Twins. The best answer I can give is that he was a great clubhouse teammate with a lot of grit. The following article touches upon some of this. 
 

https://www.oklahoman.com/article/5466464/remembering-danny-thompson-an-osu-cowboy-the-twins-could-never-forget/amp
 

 

Wow — that’s a great article. It’s long, but take the time to read it, friends. 

(And Eris, I’m also dairy farm kid who started listening at about age 9 as well. WHO in Des Moines for me. Were you any more successful than me in trying to find ways to get out of feeding calves? My best strategy was to go next door to Grandma’s and read. A father can’t tell his own mother that his son shouldn’t be reading, right?)  

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1 hour ago, IndianaTwin said:

Wow — that’s a great article. It’s long, but take the time to read it, friends. 

(And Eris, I’m also dairy farm kid who started listening at about age 9 as well. WHO in Des Moines for me. Were you any more successful than me in trying to find ways to get out of feeding calves? My best strategy was to go next door to Grandma’s and read. A father can’t tell his own mother that his son shouldn’t be reading, right?)  

My chores were feeding the calves and cleaning up after the cows. Of these, feeding calves was the more rewarding experience. Cleaning up after the cows taught me the need to work hard in school. 

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