2013 Minnesota Twins Preview
Check back in the Spring for the Twins 2013 Season Preview.
MINNESOTA TWINS INFORMATION:
Founded: 1901 (since 1961 in Minnesota)
Location: Minneapolis, Minnesota
Stadium: Target Field
Conference: American League
Division: Central Division
Rivals: Chicago White Sox, Oakland Athletics
Notable Players: Kirby Puckett, Joe Niekro, Harmon Killebrew, Rod Carew
Minnesota Twins World Series Title: 3, last World Series Title: 1991
Minnesota Twins AL Championships: 6, last AL Championship: 1991
By the early 1960s, Major League Baseball was ready to expand, and instead of starting from scratch in a new area, the American League decided to move one of its charter franchises, the Washington Senators, out west to Minnesota. While a new Senators franchise was put in its place, the old team became the Minnesota Twins and began play in the minor league venue Metropolitan Stadium, which was converted for Major League use. Little did Twins fans know, the team was about to be one of the strongest contenders in the AL Pennant race.
With a lineup featuring power hitters like Harmon Killebrew, Tony Oliva and Zolio Versalles, the Twins were the biggest surprise in the American League in 1965. The team posted a 102-60 record, an all-time mark that current Twins teams have yet to match. They ironically took the AL Pennant from the Washington Senators and were matched up against the Los Angeles Dodgers in the World Series. Unfortunately, the stellar pitching of Sandy Koufax and Don Drysdale was too much to overcome and the team fell in seven games.
The franchise was a strong contender in the AL playoff race in the succeeding years, beginning a new era of indoor baseball by moving into the Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome in 1982. The late '80s would prove to be one of the brightest moments in Twins' history. The Twins won their division championship in 1987 thanks to Jeff Reardon's clutch saves and Frank Viola's success on the mound. Kirby Puckett and Greg Gagne would carry the team over the Detroit Tigers with timely home runs in the American League Championship Series. The World Series against the St. Louis Cardinals was one of the most memorable in years. The series was a back and forth affair, but the Twins managed to force a Game 7 and take their first-ever World Championship.
While the first championship was surely a great experience, most Twins fans will tell you that the 1991 World Series championship was even sweeter. The team became the first squad in American League history to go from last to first in one season and would face off against the Atlanta Braves in the World Series. The series turned out to be extremely competitive, but the Twins once again came out on top in seven games.
With division championships in 2009 and 2010, the Twins have one of the most talented rosters in the American League and look to repeat the magic of their championship squads in the coming years.
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