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Found 12 results

  1. Nick Nelson and John Bonnes continue their conversation about the Minnesota Twins' 2003 season, focusing on the most memorable moments of the season. These moments include the Shannon Stewart trade, the final relief appearance of Johan Santana, the AJ Pierzynski trade that brought back Joe Nathan and Francisco Liriano, and more. View full video
  2. Nick Nelson and John Bonnes continue their conversation about the Minnesota Twins' 2003 season, focusing on the most memorable moments of the season. These moments include the Shannon Stewart trade, the final relief appearance of Johan Santana, the AJ Pierzynski trade that brought back Joe Nathan and Francisco Liriano, and more.
  3. Nick Nelson and John Bonnes continue their examination of the Minnesota Twins' 2003 season and focus on the team MVPs for that season. It was a season that saw a deadline deal bring Shannon Stewart to Minnesota and he was outstanding throughout their summer push. It was also the season that cemented the greatness of Johan Santana, as he entered the rotation mid-season and was the Twins most valuable pitcher. It was also the penultimate year of wildly-underrated Corey Koskie in a Twins uniform, who led the team in wins above replacement.
  4. Nick Nelson and John Bonnes continue their examination of the Minnesota Twins' 2003 season and focus on the team MVPs for that season. It was a season that saw a deadline deal bring Shannon Stewart to Minnesota and he was outstanding throughout their summer push. It was also the season that cemented the greatness of Johan Santana, as he entered the rotation mid-season and was the Twins most valuable pitcher. It was also the penultimate year of wildly-underrated Corey Koskie in a Twins uniform, who led the team in wins above replacement. View full video
  5. The Twins entered the 2003 season with high expectations. During the 2002 season, Minnesota had staved off contraction and upset the "Moneyball" Oakland A's in the ALDS. ESPN declared them "The Team That Saved Baseball," and it looked like the Twins had the pieces to contend for multiple years into the future. However, things didn't go exactly as planned at the start of the season. The first half was rough for the Twins as they sat five games under .500 at the All-Star Break. Minnesota sat 7.5 games out of first place and were in third place in the division. Twins general manager Terry Ryan had a decision to make. Should he try and bolster a line-up struggling to score runs, or should he stand pat for the third straight trade deadline? Luckily, he decided to make a move. On July 16, the Twins traded Bobby Kielty to the Toronto Blue Jays for lead-off hitter Shannon Stewart. His impact on the line-up was hard to ignore as he hit .322/.384/470 (.854 OPS). In the second half, the Twins went 46-23, including a 24-9 stretch in the season's final 33 games. Minnesota won the division by four games, and Stewart finished fourth in the AL MVP voting. Stewart's hot hitting carried over into the playoffs even though the Twins eventually lost to the Yankees. He went 6-for-15 (.400 BA) in four games with two doubles and a stolen base. Unfortunately, Torii Hunter was the only other Twins batter to have more than six hits in the series, and New York went on to win the AL pennant that season. Why Was the Trade So Important? This trade was unlike the Ryan regime in multiple ways. Kielty was a younger player with more team control than Stewart, and they had similar performances at that point in their careers. During his three seasons in Minnesota, Kielty had posted an .818 OPS, including a 116 OPS+. Stewart played ten years in Toronto and accumulated an .805 OPS with a 108 OPS+. At the time, it was a very un-Twins-like trade, but the results speak for themselves. Kielty was never able to duplicate his performance from his Twins tenure. He played four more big-league seasons with a 90 OPS+, and he didn't make a big-league appearance after his age-30 season. Stewart hit free agency but resigned with the Twins and hit .287/.347/.405 (.752) over the next three seasons. In three of his four seasons on the team, Minnesota won the division, with Stewart providing a veteran presence even with some injuries. This trade signaled that the front office was willing to make moves to help the organization for the short-term, even if there was the potential for adverse long-term repercussions. At the time, Ryan made it clear that this was a new direction for the club. "It's time we start shaking this ballclub up to see if we can get it going in the right direction," general manager Terry Ryan said. He helped the team move in the right direction that season, and it was a transformational moment for the organization. What do you remember about Stewart's time in Minnesota? Leave a COMMENT and start the discussion. MORE FROM TWINS DAILY — Latest Twins coverage from our writers — Recent Twins discussion in our forums — Follow Twins Daily via Twitter, Facebook or email
  6. During the 2003 season, the Twins were coming off an ALCS appearance and trying to find a way to get back into the division race. Trading for one outfielder made the difference and pushed Minnesota over the top. Image courtesy of Thieres Rabelo The Twins entered the 2003 season with high expectations. During the 2002 season, Minnesota had staved off contraction and upset the "Moneyball" Oakland A's in the ALDS. ESPN declared them "The Team That Saved Baseball," and it looked like the Twins had the pieces to contend for multiple years into the future. However, things didn't go exactly as planned at the start of the season. The first half was rough for the Twins as they sat five games under .500 at the All-Star Break. Minnesota sat 7.5 games out of first place and were in third place in the division. Twins general manager Terry Ryan had a decision to make. Should he try and bolster a line-up struggling to score runs, or should he stand pat for the third straight trade deadline? Luckily, he decided to make a move. On July 16, the Twins traded Bobby Kielty to the Toronto Blue Jays for lead-off hitter Shannon Stewart. His impact on the line-up was hard to ignore as he hit .322/.384/470 (.854 OPS). In the second half, the Twins went 46-23, including a 24-9 stretch in the season's final 33 games. Minnesota won the division by four games, and Stewart finished fourth in the AL MVP voting. Stewart's hot hitting carried over into the playoffs even though the Twins eventually lost to the Yankees. He went 6-for-15 (.400 BA) in four games with two doubles and a stolen base. Unfortunately, Torii Hunter was the only other Twins batter to have more than six hits in the series, and New York went on to win the AL pennant that season. Why Was the Trade So Important? This trade was unlike the Ryan regime in multiple ways. Kielty was a younger player with more team control than Stewart, and they had similar performances at that point in their careers. During his three seasons in Minnesota, Kielty had posted an .818 OPS, including a 116 OPS+. Stewart played ten years in Toronto and accumulated an .805 OPS with a 108 OPS+. At the time, it was a very un-Twins-like trade, but the results speak for themselves. Kielty was never able to duplicate his performance from his Twins tenure. He played four more big-league seasons with a 90 OPS+, and he didn't make a big-league appearance after his age-30 season. Stewart hit free agency but resigned with the Twins and hit .287/.347/.405 (.752) over the next three seasons. In three of his four seasons on the team, Minnesota won the division, with Stewart providing a veteran presence even with some injuries. This trade signaled that the front office was willing to make moves to help the organization for the short-term, even if there was the potential for adverse long-term repercussions. At the time, Ryan made it clear that this was a new direction for the club. "It's time we start shaking this ballclub up to see if we can get it going in the right direction," general manager Terry Ryan said. He helped the team move in the right direction that season, and it was a transformational moment for the organization. What do you remember about Stewart's time in Minnesota? Leave a COMMENT and start the discussion. MORE FROM TWINS DAILY — Latest Twins coverage from our writers — Recent Twins discussion in our forums — Follow Twins Daily via Twitter, Facebook or email View full article
  7. John Bonnes and Nick Nelson continue their trek through the early 2000s with the 2003 Minnesota Twins squad. Fresh off a dominant 2002 campaign that led them to the ALCS, the 2003 team stumbled early and looked to be out of the race before Terry Ryan traded for Shannon Stewart at the deadline, which helped the team surge back into first place in a thrilling August and September. We also saw the continued emergence of Johan Santana after his breakout 2002 season, which caused quite a stir in Twins Territory over debates about the future of the young start, who spent nearly half the season pitching out of the bullpen before moving to the rotation to finish the year.
  8. John Bonnes and Nick Nelson continue their trek through the early 2000s with the 2003 Minnesota Twins squad. Fresh off a dominant 2002 campaign that led them to the ALCS, the 2003 team stumbled early and looked to be out of the race before Terry Ryan traded for Shannon Stewart at the deadline, which helped the team surge back into first place in a thrilling August and September. We also saw the continued emergence of Johan Santana after his breakout 2002 season, which caused quite a stir in Twins Territory over debates about the future of the young start, who spent nearly half the season pitching out of the bullpen before moving to the rotation to finish the year. View full video
  9. It was the final day of the 2003 All-Star break. The defending American League Central champion Twins had limped out to a 44-49 record and were 7.5 games back in the division, sitting in third place. The front office/ownership hadn’t made any big moves the previous two seasons despite the team being competitive, so there seemed to be little reason to expect any motivation to build up the roster. There was still just as much discussion about the potential for contraction as there was contention during this time. But prior to the start of the second half, Terry Ryan struck a deal. The Twins acquired Shannon Stewart from the Toronto Blue Jays to serve as the team’s leadoff hitter. July 16, 2003 ended up being a momentous turning point for not only that season, but in some ways you could argue for the entire organization/future of the Twins. Stewart hit .322/.384/470 (.854 OPS) for the Twins as the team went 46-23 in the second half. That season-ending surge also saw the team post an insane 24-9 record over its final 33 games. There was an 11-game winning streak included in that stretch. The Twins ended up charging back to win the division by four games. For his efforts, Stewart finished fourth in AL MVP voting. Things turned out about as good as could have been imagined, but that was actually somewhat of a controversial trade at the time that it happened. The player Ryan sent to Toronto had actually been performing basically as well as Stewart, was younger and had many more years of team control. At the time of the move, Bobby Kielty was hitting .252/.370/.420 (.790 OPS) for the Twins while Stewart was posting a .294/.347/.449 (.796 OPS) batting line for the Blue Jays. It was essentially a challenge trade, a very gutsy move. After accounting for a 125 wRC+ over his time with the Twins, Kielty never came even close to that production elsewhere. He posted a 92 wRC+ over 367 career games from that moment forward. Stewart ended up signing a three-year deal to remain with the Twins the following offseason. Stewart was excellent when healthy once again in 2004, helping the Twins to yet another AL Central crown. His first Opening Day in Minnesota was a memorable one, as he delivered a walk-off homer in the bottom of the 11th inning, sending the Metrodome into a frenzy. Stewart’s my personal all-time favorite among Twins midseason additions. I’d love to hear your memories from that time, but I’m also interested in your own personal favorites from over the years. A certain hitter on one of the World Series champion teams certainly sticks out, if anyone else cares to share some memories from 1987. If you haven’t signed up for an account at the site yet, click here to get registered and join in on the conversation.
  10. April 9, 2000 Twins & Royals Go Back-to-Back-to-Back Already up 6-0 entering the top of the sixth in Kansas City, Corey Koskie leads the inning off with a base hit. Ron Coomer, Jacque Jones and Matt LeCroy then proceed to hit three consecutive home runs on four total pitches. Coomer homers again in the seventh, again with Koskie on base. Eric Milton retires the first 20 batters in order and has a 2-hit shutout going into the 8th. After retiring the first two batters, including former Twin David McCarty, Milton allows two hits and is relieved by Eddie Guardado. Guardado gives up an RBI single and then back-to-back home runs to Carlos Beltran and Jermaine Dye. Eddie is relieved by Hector Carrasco who surrenders the Royals’ third consecutive home run to Mike Sweeney. It is the first game in major league history in which each team hits back-to-back-to-back home runs. The Twins are one of seven teams to have hit four consecutive home runs, doing so on May 2, 1964 in Kansas City versus the Athletics. With the score tied 3-3 entering the top of the 11th, Tony Oliva hit a leadoff home run followed by Bob Allison, Jimmie Hall, and Harmon Killebrew, giving the Twins a 7-3 victory. The Twins set the American League record by hitting five home runs in a single inning on June 9, 1966, also against the KC Athletics, but this time in Bloomington at the Met. The Athletics erupted for four runs in the first off of Camilo Pascual, who only lasted ⅔ of an inning. Facing 1987 Hall of Fame inductee Catfish Hunter the Twins pulled within 4-3 on a Bob Allison RBI double in the fifth and a two-run Killebrew homer in the sixth. Then, in the bottom of the seventh, Rich Rollins and Zoilo Versalles connected for back-to-back homers off of Hunter to take the lead. Reliever Paul Lindblad retired Sandy Valdespino before allowing back-to-back homers to Tony Oliva and Don Mincher. The Athletics then turned to John Wyatt who allowed the Twins’ third consecutive home run, and the fifth of the inning, to Harmon Killebrew, his second of the game. Four National League teams have hit five home runs in an inning. The first time was in 1939 and the most recent in 2006. All four were against the Cincinnati Reds. April 9, 2010 Drew Butera Makes Major League Debut Catcher Drew Butera makes his major league debut in Chicago, making he and his dad Sal (1980-’82 and ‘87) the first father-son duo in Twins history. Drew goes 0-for-3 with three strikeouts and a sac bunt in a 4-3, 11-inning Twins win over the White Sox. April 10, 1982 Twins Deal Smalley, Acquire Gagne The Twins trade Roy Smalley and 1975 Alexandria High School graduate Gary Serum to the New York Yankees for Ron Davis, Paul Boris, and Greg Gagne. Ron Davis, who had been an All-Star in ‘81, was one of the game’s first setup men, combining for a potent 1-2 punch with Hall of Famer Goose Gossage. Davis still holds the Yankees record for consecutive strikeouts in a single game with eight on May 4, 1981. Doug Fister established a new American League record for consecutive strikeouts in a game with nine on September 27, 2012. The major league record belongs to Tom Seaver who K’ed 10 in a row on April 22, 1970. Ron Davis was never in All-Star form in Minnesota, however. He tied a single season record with 14 blown saves in 1984, a dubious feat which no pitcher has matched since. Four pitchers had blown 14 saves in a season prior to Davis, including Hall of Famers Rollie Fingers (1976) and Bruce Sutter (‘78). Incidentally, Goose Gossage (112), Rollie Fingers (109) and Jeff Reardon (106) have the most blown saves in major league history. Gossage’s six seasons with 10 or more blown saves are most all-time, followed by Fingers and Reardon, each with four seasons of 10 or more. The Twins sent Ron Davis to the Chicago Cubs in August of ‘86 as part of a trade that brought George Frazier to the Twins. Frazier pitched in 54 games for the ‘87 Twins. Davis never saved another game, pitching sparingly in relief for the Cubs, Dodgers and Giants through the end of the ‘88 season. Though Davis was the object of the Twins’ desire at the time, Greg Gagne would obviously emerge as the key figure in this transaction. He didn’t make his major league debut until 1983, and even then only played 12 games between the ‘83 and ‘84 seasons before becoming a fixture at shortstop for the Twins from 1985 to 1992. He was a key component of the Twins’ ‘87 and ‘91 World Series Championships. The Twins had originally acquired Roy Smalley in the 1976 trade that sent Bert Blyleven and Danny Thompson to the Texas Rangers. In July of ‘84, the Yankees offloaded Smalley to the White Sox in exchange for players to be named later, one of whom wound up being Doug Drabek, who, after just one season, the Yankees in turn shipped off to Pittsburgh where he would win the 1990 Cy Young Award. The White Sox traded Smalley back to Minnesota in 1985. Smalley retired after the Twins’ 1987 World Series Championship season. Gary Serum was born in Fargo, and grew up in Alexandria, Minnesota. He played two and a half major league seasons with the Twins from 1977 to ‘79. Despite posting a 9-1 record between Double-A and Triple-A in the Yankees organization, 1982 was Serum’s final professional season. April 11 Birthdate of Bob Casey The inimitable Bob Casey was born in Minneapolis on this date in 1925. Casey was the Twins’ Public Address Announcer for 44 years, from 1961 until his death in 2005. He also worked for the Minneapolis Millers, the Lakers and the Vikings. The decorated World War II veteran is buried at Fort Snelling National Cemetery. Tony Oliva, Kent Hrbek, Dan Gladden, Jack Morris, John Gordon, and Dave St. Peter served as pallbearers at his funeral. April 11, 1961 Twins First Regular Season Game The Twins played their first ever regular season game at Yankee Stadium. Harmon Killebrew collected the first hit in Twins history leading off the fourth with a single to center. Twins pitcher Pedro Ramos and Whitey Ford were locked in a scoreless duel until Bob Allison led off the seventh with a home run, the first in Twins history. The Twins went on to win their first game 6-0 as Ramos pitched a complete game, 3-hit shutout versus the eventual 1961 World Series Champs. Ramos held Yogi Berra, Mickey Mantle and Roger Maris to a combined 1-for-11, with Berra singling in the first. Ramos did not allow a baserunner after the fifth inning. Roger Maris would establish a new single season home run record with 61 that year. The Twins would go on to a 5-1 record before playing their first home game in front of a crowd already deep in the throes of pennant fever. They would lose their first game in Bloomington, however, 3-5 to the new Senators, and finish their inaugural season 70-90, 7th place in the America League. April 12, 1926 Cubs Hero Walt Moryn Born in St. Paul It’s the birthdate of 1944 St. Paul Harding High School graduate Walt Moryn, born 91 years ago. He played parts of eight major league seasons from 1954-’61 with the Brooklyn Dodgers, Cubs, Cardinals, and Pirates. He played 11 regular season games for the 1955 World Series Champion Dodgers, and represented the Cubs in the 1958 All-Star Game (on the bench). Cubs fans’ endearing memory of Moryn is of him making a dramatic shoestring catch for the final out of Don Cardwell’s no-hitter on May 15, 1960. Moryn passed away on July 21, 1996 in Winfield, Illinois. He was 70 years old. April 12, 2005 Twins Win on Shannon Stewart Walk-Off The Twins beat the Tigers 5-4 on a Shannon Stewart walk-off ground rule double off of Troy Percival. Percival had not allowed an earned run versus the Twins in over 40 innings going back to 1995. Torii Hunter drove in Jason Bartlett to tie the game in the bottom of the eighth. April 12, 2010 First Regular Season Game at Target Field The Twins beat the Red Sox 5-2 in the first regular season game played at Target Field. Carl Pavano earned the win for the Twins. Jon Lester, the losing pitcher, walked Denard Span to lead off the bottom of the first. Orlando Hudson then collected the Twins’ first hit at the new ballpark. After Mauer and Morneau made the first two outs, Michael Cuddyer collected the new stadium’s first RBI, driving in Span on a single to left. Jason Kubel then drove in Hudson, giving the Twins a 2-0 lead in the first. Mauer hit an RBI double in the second, and an RBI single in the fourth. Jason Kubel hit Target Field’s first regular season home run leading off the seventh. Jon Rauch retired Kevin Youkilis, David Ortiz and Adrian Beltre in order for the save. April 13, 1962 Home Opener Snowed Out In just the second year of major league baseball in Minnesota the Twins’ home opener vs. the Los Angeles Angels is cancelled due to six inches of snow. April 14, 1927 Winona’s Wera Makes MLB Debut 25-year-old Winona, Minnesota native Julie Wera makes his major league debut for New York at Yankee Stadium, pinch-hitting for Hall of Famer Waite Hoyt against Hall of Famer Lefty Grove. He grounded out. Wera played 38 games at third base for the vaunted ‘27 Yankees. He hit his one and only big league homer during a doubleheader at Yankee Stadium on July 4, 1927 in front of a then-record crowd of 74,000. Wera did not play in the 1927 World Series in which the Yankees swept the Pirates. He did, however, receive the same $5,782 portion of the winners’ purse as the rest of his teammates, which included Lou Gehrig and Babe Ruth. Nice bonus, considering that Wera’s ‘27 salary was reported to be $2,400. April 14, 1983 Snow Collapses the Dome The largest April snowstorm in Minneapolis’s history forces the postponement of a game versus the California Angels. The decision to postpone the game was made the night before out of concern that the Angels would not be able to arrive in Minnesota in time. Travel concerns were a moot point, however, as damage from the storm caused the Metrodome roof to collapse about twelve hours after the decision to postpone. The spring storm dumped over 13 inches of snow on the Twin Cities. April 14, 2016 Worst Start in Twins History The Twins are swept by the White Sox in their home-opening series, falling to 0-9 to start the season, the worst start in franchise’s 116-year history. It is the worst start by any major league team in 13 years, going back to the epicly awful ‘03 Tigers who finished 43-119. The Braves would also fall to 0-9 later that day, and finish the season 68-93. The Twins, meanwhile, would finish 59-103, the worst record in Minnesota Twins history. It was remarkably not the worst season in franchise history, however. The 1904 Washington Senators finished 38-113 (.252 winning %). April 15, 1998 Eisenreich’s Last Home Run Playing for the Florida Marlins, 1977 St. Cloud Tech graduate and St. Cloud State Hall of Famer Jim Eisenreich hits his final major league home run, a two-run game-winner off Curt Schilling driving in current Brewers manager Craig Counsell. April 15, 2000 Ripken Gets 3,000 at the Dome Cal Ripken Jr. becomes the 24th player to reach 3,000 hits in a 6-4 Orioles win at the Metrodome. Ripken entered the game sitting at 2,997, having collected one hit the night before in a wild 10-9 Twins win. Trailing 4-9, the Twins scored six runs in the bottom of the eighth before Eddie Guardado earned the save, retiring Ripken for the final out of the game. On this night, Ripken was 2-for-3 when he came up in the seventh in a tie game with two out and Albert Belle on third. Hector Carrasco was brought in from the bullpen to face the Iron Man. Catcher Matt LeCroy gave up a passed ball on Carrasco’s first pitch, allowing Belle to score the go-ahead run. Then, on the second pitch of the at-bat, Ripken stroked a line-drive single to center, becoming the seventh player in major league history to collect both 400 home runs and 3,000 hits. Former Twin Mike Trombley came on in the bottom of the 9th to earn the save for Baltimore. Noteworthy in retrospect is the fact that Midre Cummings pinch-hit for the number nine batter, Torii Hunter. Ripken was greeted at first after his 3,000th hit by base coach Eddie Murray, who had himself collected his 3,000th hit at the Metrodome in 1995 off of Mike Trombley as a member of the Cleveland ballclub. The following season, while playing for Baltimore, Murray became just the third person in major league history with 3,000 hits and 500 home runs. Rafael Palmeiro and Alex Rodriguez have since joined the club. St. Paul Central High School graduate and Golden Gophers legend Dave Winfield also collected his 3,000th hit at the Metrodome in 1993. 29 players have collected 3,000 hits in the 146 year history of Major League Baseball. Three of those reached the milestone at the Metrodome in a period of seven years. It is also noteworthy that of the 29 members of the 3,000 hit club, two (Winfield and Paul Molitor) were born in St. Paul just five years apart. April 15, 2001 Milton Ks 8 of First 10 Hosting the White Sox, Eric Milton gets off to a hot start, striking out the side including Frank Thomas. Milton goes on to strike out eight of the first 10 batters he faces. He allows only two runs over seven innings, those coming on a two-run Thomas homer in the sixth, one of 521 he hit in his career, tied with Ted Williams and Willie McCovey for 19th all-time. LaTroy Hawkins earned the save in the Twins 4-3 victory, their sixth straight, improving to 9-2 on the season. Keep in touch with @@TwinsAlmanac on Twitter, and on Facebook.
  11. April 10, 1982 The Twins traded Roy Smalley and St. Cloud State alumnus, Gary Serum, to the New York Yankees for Ron Davis, Greg Gagne and Paul Boris. Ron Davis, who had been an All-Star in ‘81, was one of the game’s first setup men, combining for a potent 1-2 punch with Hall of Famer, Goose Gossage. Davis still holds the Yankees record for consecutive strikeouts in a single game with 8 on May 4, 1981. Doug Fister established a new American League record for consecutive strikeouts in a game with 9 on September 27th, 2012. The Major League record belongs to Tom Seaver, who K’ed 10 in a row on April 22nd, 1970. Ron Davis was never in all-star form in Minnesota, however. He tied a single season record with 14 blown saves in 1984, a dubious feat which no pitcher has matched since. Four pitchers had blown 14 saves in a season prior to Davis, including Hall of Famers Rollie Fingers (1976) and Bruce Sutter (‘78). Incidentally, Goose Gossage (112), Rollie Fingers (109) and Jeff Reardon (106) have the most blown saves in major league history. Gossage’s six seasons with 10 or more blown saves are most all-time, followed by Fingers and Reardon, each with four seasons of 10 or more. Ron Davis was sent to the Chicago Cubs in August of ‘86 as part of a trade that brought George Frazier to the Twins. Frazier pitched in 54 games for the ‘87 Twins. Davis never saved another game, pitching sparingly in relief for the Cubs, Dodgers and Giants through the end of the ‘88 season. Though Davis was the object of the Twins’ desire at the time, Greg Gagne would obviously emerge as the key figure in this transaction. He didn’t make his major league debut until 1983 and even then only played 12 games between the ‘83 and ‘84 seasons before becoming a fixture at shortstop for the Twins from 1985 to 1992. He was a key component of the Twins’ ‘87 and ‘91 World Series championships. The Twins had originally acquired Roy Smalley in the 1976 trade that sent Bert Blyleven and Danny Thompson to the Texas Rangers. In July of ‘84, the Yankees offloaded Smalley to the White Sox in exchange for players to be named later, one of whom wound up being Doug Drabek, who, after just one season, the Yankees in turn shipped off to Pittsburgh where he would win the 1990 Cy Young Award. The White Sox traded Smalley back to Minnesota in 1985. Smalley retired after the Twins’ 1987 World Series championship season. Gary Serum was born in Fargo, went to high school in Alexandria, MN and pitched at Minnesota State Moorhead and St. Cloud State before being signed as an amateur free agent by the Twins in 1975. He played two and a half major league seasons with the Twins from ‘77 to ‘79. Despite posting a 9-1 record between AA and AAA in the Yankees organization, 1982 was Serum’s final professional season. April 11th It’s the birthday of the inimitable Bob Casey (1925-2005), Twins public address announcer for 44 years. Casey was the only PA announcer in Twins history until his death in 2005. Casey also worked for the Minneapolis Millers, the Lakers and the Vikings. April 11, 1961 The Twins played their first ever regular season game at Yankee Stadium. Harmon Killebrew collected the first hit in Twins history, leading off the 4th with a single to center. Twins pitcher Pedro Ramos and Whitey Ford were locked in a scoreless duel until Bob Allison led off the 7th with a home run, the first in Twins history. The Twins went on to win their first game 6-0 as Ramos pitched a complete game, 3-hit shutout versus the eventual 1961 World Series champs. Ramos held Yogi Berra, Mickey Mantle and Roger Maris to a combined 1-for-11, with Berra singling in the 1st. Ramos did not allow a base-runner after the 5th inning. Roger Maris would establish a new single season home run record with 61 that year. The Twins would go on to a 5-1 record before playing their first home game in front of a crowd already deep in the throes of pennant fever. They would lose their first game in Bloomington, however, 3-5 to the new Senators, and finish their inaugural season 70-90, good for 7th place in the America League. April 12, 2005 The Twins beat the Tigers 5-4 on a Shannon Stewart walk-off ground rule double off Troy Percival, who had not allowed an earned run versus the Twins in over 40 innings going back to 1995. Torii Hunter drove in Jason Bartlett to tie the game in the bottom of the 8th. April 12, 2010 The Twins beat the Red Sox 5-2 in the first regular season game played at Target Field. Carl Pavano earned the win for the Twins. Jon Lester, the losing pitcher, walked Denard Span to lead off the bottom of the 1st. Orlando Hudson then collected the Twins’ first hit at Target Field. After Mauer and Morneau made the first two outs, Michael Cuddyer collected the new stadium’s first RBI, driving in Span on a single to left. Jason Kubel then drove in Hudson, giving the Twins a 2-0 lead in the 1st. Mauer hit an RBI double in the 2nd, and an RBI single in the 4th. Jason Kubel hit Target Field’s first regular season home run leading off the 7th. Jon Rauch retired Kevin Youkilis, David Ortiz and Adrian Beltre in order for the save. April 13, 1962 In just the second year of major league baseball in Minnesota, the scheduled home opener versus the Los Angeles Angels was cancelled due to six inches of snow. April 14, 1983 The largest April snowstorm in Minneapolis’s history forced the postponement of a game versus the California Angels. The decision to postpone the game was made the night before out of concern that the Angels would not be able to arrive in Minnesota in time. Travel concerns were a moot point, however, as damage from the storm caused the Metrodome roof to collapse about twelve hours after the decision to postpone. The spring storm dumped over 13 inches of snow on the Twin Cities. April 15, 2000 Cal Ripken, jr. became the 24th player to reach 3,000 hits in a 6-4 Orioles win at the Metrodome. Ripken entered the game sitting at 2,997, having collected 1 hit the night before in a wild 10-9 Twins win. Trailing 4-9, the Twins scored 6 runs in the bottom of the 8th before Eddie Guardado earned the save, retiring Ripken for the final out of the game. On this night, Ripken was 2-for-3 when he came up in the 7th in a tie game with 2 out and Albert Belle on third. Hector Carrasco was brought in from the bullpen to face the Iron Man. Catcher Matt LeCroy gave up a passed ball on Carrasco’s first pitch, allowing Belle to score the go-ahead run. Then, on the second pitch of the at-bat, Ripken stroked a line drive single to center, becoming the seventh player in major league history to collect both 400 home runs and 3,000 hits. Former Twin Mike Trombley came on in the bottom of the 9th to earn the save for Baltimore. Noteworthy in retrospect is the fact that Midre Cummings pinch-hit for the number nine batter, Torii Hunter. Ripken was greeted at first after his 3,000th hit by base coach Eddie Murray, who had himself hit his 3,000th hit at the Metrodome in 1995 off of Mike Trombley as a member of the Cleveland Indians. The following season, while playing for Baltimore, Murray became just the third person in major league history with 3,000 hits and 500 home runs. Rafael Palmeiro and Alex Rodriguez have since joined the club. St. Paul Central High School graduate and Golden Gophers legend, Dave Winfield, also collected his 3,000th hit at the Metrodome in 1993. 29 players have collected 3,000 hits in the 146 year history of major league baseball. Three of those reached the milestone at the Metrodome in a period of seven years. It is also noteworthy that of the 29 members of the 3,000 hit club, two (Winfield and Paul Molitor) were born in St. Paul just five years apart. April 15, 2001 In a home game versus the Chicago White Sox, Eric Milton struck out the side in the 1st, including Frank Thomas. Milton went on to strike out 8 of the first 10 batters he faced. He allowed only 2 runs over 7 innings, those coming on a 2-run Thomas homer in the 6th, one of 521 he hit in his career, tied with Ted Williams and Willie McCovey for 19th all-time. LaTroy Hawkins earned the save in the Twins 4-3 victory, their 6th straight, improving to 9-2 on the season. April 16, 1961 In the top of the 1st in game 1 of a doubleheader in Baltimore, Bob Allison hit the first grand slam in Twins history. Baltimore’s Chuck Estrada, who had tied for the league lead with 18 wins the previous season and who would win 15 in 1961, walked three straight to start the game before giving up a home run to the cleanup hitter, Allison. After giving up a double to Jim Lemon, Estrada was pulled, having pitched to just five batters. Relief pitcher John Papa didn’t fare much better, walking home two more Twins runs before Dick Hall, the third pitcher used by Baltimore in the 6-run 1st, came on to get the final out. Bob Allison added a 3-run home run in the 6th, giving him 7 RBIs for the game. The Twins won 10-5. In game 2, the Twins held a 4-2 lead going into the bottom of the 9th. With 1 out and the bases loaded, Baltimore crept within 1 on an RBI groundout. Then, with 2 down, runners on second and third and future-Hall of Fame manager Whitey Herzog pinch-hitting for future-Hall of Fame knuckleballer Hoyt Wilhelm, Twins pitcher Ray Moore unleashed a wild pitch, allowing Baltimore to tie the game 4-4. In the top of the 11th, Zoilo Versalles hit a 2-run home run and Chuck Stobbs slammed the door in the bottom of the inning. For the history of the Minnesota Twins, told one day at a time, like The Twins Almanac on Facebook and follow @TwinsAlmanac on Twitter. For the stories of the Major Leaguers who grew up in Minnesota, like Major Minnesotans on Facebook and follow @MajorMinnesota on Twitter.
  12. The Twins Almanac is back with a look at this week in Minnesota Twins history. It starts with a big trade, but there are stories of bad weather in the Met Stadium and Metrodome eras and much, much more.April 10, 1982 The Twins traded Roy Smalley and St. Cloud State alumnus, Gary Serum, to the New York Yankees for Ron Davis, Greg Gagne and Paul Boris. Ron Davis, who had been an All-Star in ‘81, was one of the game’s first setup men, combining for a potent 1-2 punch with Hall of Famer, Goose Gossage. Davis still holds the Yankees record for consecutive strikeouts in a single game with 8 on May 4, 1981. Doug Fister established a new American League record for consecutive strikeouts in a game with 9 on September 27th, 2012. The Major League record belongs to Tom Seaver, who K’ed 10 in a row on April 22nd, 1970. Ron Davis was never in all-star form in Minnesota, however. He tied a single season record with 14 blown saves in 1984, a dubious feat which no pitcher has matched since. Four pitchers had blown 14 saves in a season prior to Davis, including Hall of Famers Rollie Fingers (1976) and Bruce Sutter (‘78). Incidentally, Goose Gossage (112), Rollie Fingers (109) and Jeff Reardon (106) have the most blown saves in major league history. Gossage’s six seasons with 10 or more blown saves are most all-time, followed by Fingers and Reardon, each with four seasons of 10 or more. Ron Davis was sent to the Chicago Cubs in August of ‘86 as part of a trade that brought George Frazier to the Twins. Frazier pitched in 54 games for the ‘87 Twins. Davis never saved another game, pitching sparingly in relief for the Cubs, Dodgers and Giants through the end of the ‘88 season. Though Davis was the object of the Twins’ desire at the time, Greg Gagne would obviously emerge as the key figure in this transaction. He didn’t make his major league debut until 1983 and even then only played 12 games between the ‘83 and ‘84 seasons before becoming a fixture at shortstop for the Twins from 1985 to 1992. He was a key component of the Twins’ ‘87 and ‘91 World Series championships. The Twins had originally acquired Roy Smalley in the 1976 trade that sent Bert Blyleven and Danny Thompson to the Texas Rangers. In July of ‘84, the Yankees offloaded Smalley to the White Sox in exchange for players to be named later, one of whom wound up being Doug Drabek, who, after just one season, the Yankees in turn shipped off to Pittsburgh where he would win the 1990 Cy Young Award. The White Sox traded Smalley back to Minnesota in 1985. Smalley retired after the Twins’ 1987 World Series championship season. Gary Serum was born in Fargo, went to high school in Alexandria, MN and pitched at Minnesota State Moorhead and St. Cloud State before being signed as an amateur free agent by the Twins in 1975. He played two and a half major league seasons with the Twins from ‘77 to ‘79. Despite posting a 9-1 record between AA and AAA in the Yankees organization, 1982 was Serum’s final professional season. April 11th It’s the birthday of the inimitable Bob Casey (1925-2005), Twins public address announcer for 44 years. Casey was the only PA announcer in Twins history until his death in 2005. Casey also worked for the Minneapolis Millers, the Lakers and the Vikings. April 11, 1961 The Twins played their first ever regular season game at Yankee Stadium. Harmon Killebrew collected the first hit in Twins history, leading off the 4th with a single to center. Twins pitcher Pedro Ramos and Whitey Ford were locked in a scoreless duel until Bob Allison led off the 7th with a home run, the first in Twins history. The Twins went on to win their first game 6-0 as Ramos pitched a complete game, 3-hit shutout versus the eventual 1961 World Series champs. Ramos held Yogi Berra, Mickey Mantle and Roger Maris to a combined 1-for-11, with Berra singling in the 1st. Ramos did not allow a base-runner after the 5th inning. Roger Maris would establish a new single season home run record with 61 that year. The Twins would go on to a 5-1 record before playing their first home game in front of a crowd already deep in the throes of pennant fever. They would lose their first game in Bloomington, however, 3-5 to the new Senators, and finish their inaugural season 70-90, good for 7th place in the America League. April 12, 2005 The Twins beat the Tigers 5-4 on a Shannon Stewart walk-off ground rule double off Troy Percival, who had not allowed an earned run versus the Twins in over 40 innings going back to 1995. Torii Hunter drove in Jason Bartlett to tie the game in the bottom of the 8th. April 12, 2010 The Twins beat the Red Sox 5-2 in the first regular season game played at Target Field. Carl Pavano earned the win for the Twins. Jon Lester, the losing pitcher, walked Denard Span to lead off the bottom of the 1st. Orlando Hudson then collected the Twins’ first hit at Target Field. After Mauer and Morneau made the first two outs, Michael Cuddyer collected the new stadium’s first RBI, driving in Span on a single to left. Jason Kubel then drove in Hudson, giving the Twins a 2-0 lead in the 1st. Mauer hit an RBI double in the 2nd, and an RBI single in the 4th. Jason Kubel hit Target Field’s first regular season home run leading off the 7th. Jon Rauch retired Kevin Youkilis, David Ortiz and Adrian Beltre in order for the save. April 13, 1962 In just the second year of major league baseball in Minnesota, the scheduled home opener versus the Los Angeles Angels was cancelled due to six inches of snow. April 14, 1983 The largest April snowstorm in Minneapolis’s history forced the postponement of a game versus the California Angels. The decision to postpone the game was made the night before out of concern that the Angels would not be able to arrive in Minnesota in time. Travel concerns were a moot point, however, as damage from the storm caused the Metrodome roof to collapse about twelve hours after the decision to postpone. The spring storm dumped over 13 inches of snow on the Twin Cities. April 15, 2000 Cal Ripken, jr. became the 24th player to reach 3,000 hits in a 6-4 Orioles win at the Metrodome. Ripken entered the game sitting at 2,997, having collected 1 hit the night before in a wild 10-9 Twins win. Trailing 4-9, the Twins scored 6 runs in the bottom of the 8th before Eddie Guardado earned the save, retiring Ripken for the final out of the game. On this night, Ripken was 2-for-3 when he came up in the 7th in a tie game with 2 out and Albert Belle on third. Hector Carrasco was brought in from the bullpen to face the Iron Man. Catcher Matt LeCroy gave up a passed ball on Carrasco’s first pitch, allowing Belle to score the go-ahead run. Then, on the second pitch of the at-bat, Ripken stroked a line drive single to center, becoming the seventh player in major league history to collect both 400 home runs and 3,000 hits. Former Twin Mike Trombley came on in the bottom of the 9th to earn the save for Baltimore. Noteworthy in retrospect is the fact that Midre Cummings pinch-hit for the number nine batter, Torii Hunter. Ripken was greeted at first after his 3,000th hit by base coach Eddie Murray, who had himself hit his 3,000th hit at the Metrodome in 1995 off of Mike Trombley as a member of the Cleveland Indians. The following season, while playing for Baltimore, Murray became just the third person in major league history with 3,000 hits and 500 home runs. Rafael Palmeiro and Alex Rodriguez have since joined the club. St. Paul Central High School graduate and Golden Gophers legend, Dave Winfield, also collected his 3,000th hit at the Metrodome in 1993. 29 players have collected 3,000 hits in the 146 year history of major league baseball. Three of those reached the milestone at the Metrodome in a period of seven years. It is also noteworthy that of the 29 members of the 3,000 hit club, two (Winfield and Paul Molitor) were born in St. Paul just five years apart. April 15, 2001 In a home game versus the Chicago White Sox, Eric Milton struck out the side in the 1st, including Frank Thomas. Milton went on to strike out 8 of the first 10 batters he faced. He allowed only 2 runs over 7 innings, those coming on a 2-run Thomas homer in the 6th, one of 521 he hit in his career, tied with Ted Williams and Willie McCovey for 19th all-time. LaTroy Hawkins earned the save in the Twins 4-3 victory, their 6th straight, improving to 9-2 on the season. April 16, 1961 In the top of the 1st in game 1 of a doubleheader in Baltimore, Bob Allison hit the first grand slam in Twins history. Baltimore’s Chuck Estrada, who had tied for the league lead with 18 wins the previous season and who would win 15 in 1961, walked three straight to start the game before giving up a home run to the cleanup hitter, Allison. After giving up a double to Jim Lemon, Estrada was pulled, having pitched to just five batters. Relief pitcher John Papa didn’t fare much better, walking home two more Twins runs before Dick Hall, the third pitcher used by Baltimore in the 6-run 1st, came on to get the final out. Bob Allison added a 3-run home run in the 6th, giving him 7 RBIs for the game. The Twins won 10-5. In game 2, the Twins held a 4-2 lead going into the bottom of the 9th. With 1 out and the bases loaded, Baltimore crept within 1 on an RBI groundout. Then, with 2 down, runners on second and third and future-Hall of Fame manager Whitey Herzog pinch-hitting for future-Hall of Fame knuckleballer Hoyt Wilhelm, Twins pitcher Ray Moore unleashed a wild pitch, allowing Baltimore to tie the game 4-4. In the top of the 11th, Zoilo Versalles hit a 2-run home run and Chuck Stobbs slammed the door in the bottom of the inning. For the history of the Minnesota Twins, told one day at a time, like The Twins Almanac on Facebook and follow @TwinsAlmanac on Twitter. For the stories of the Major Leaguers who grew up in Minnesota, like Major Minnesotans on Facebook and follow @MajorMinnesota on Twitter. Click here to view the article
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