Minnesota Twins’ 55th Anniversary
The years just fly by, don't they? Next year will mark the 30th anniversary of the first World Series Champion Twins. This April marks the 55th anniversary of the old Washington Senators moving to their new home in Minnesota and becoming the Twins. As part of the agreement, Washington received a new expansion team that took on the Senators name.
The Twins did quite well attendance-wise their first season in Bloomington. They drew just over 1.2 million fans, which was good enough for third best in the American League. On the field was a different story, as they finished at 70-90 during the first 162-game season. A couple of games got rained out and never made up.
Let's take a look at some of the part-time players. There were some unique ones. Elmer Valo was born in Poland. I can think of only one other major leaguer who was born in Poland. That would be Moe Drabowsky. On July 4, seldom-used Julio Becquer entered the major league records forever. He hit a grand slam against the White Sox and for the first time ever the four runs that scored were charged to four different pitchers.
The Twins had a pitcher named Paul Giel who was and still is well-known to Minnesotans. Did you know that Giel died on his way home from the Metrodome? He suffered a heart attack after watching his grandson in a little league game. A name long associated with this franchise was Ossie Bluege. He made his debut as a third baseman with the then Washington Senators and later served as a manager and farm director with the team. When the team moved to Minnesota he became the comptroller until retiring in 1971. Forty-nine years in baseball, all spent with one team.
How about the Twins in '16? Are you ready? Catch all the Twins games on AM 1390 KRFO.
Here's a YouTube clip of that first Twins game in Minnesota from April 1961.