Happy Birthday–January 17

Louis Santop (1890)
Hank Leiber (1911)
Lum Harris (1915)
Mayo Smith (1915)
Don Zimmer (1931)
Keith Lieppman (1949)
Antonio Munoz (1949)
Pete LaCock (1952)
Darrell Porter (1952)
Mark Littell (1953)
Jerry Turner (1954)
Doug Simunic (1956)
T. R. Bryden (1959)
Chili Davis (1960)
SBG (1965)
Tyler Houston (1971)
Rob Bell (1977)
Trevor Bauer (1991)
Randy Dobnak (1995)

Catcher Louis Santop was a star in the Negro Leagues, hitting .349 over fifteen seasons.

Keith Lieppman was Oakland's Director of Player Development from 1992-2021, when he became a special advisor for player development.

Antonio Munoz was a long-time star in Cuba, winning eight home run titles and becoming the all-time leader in walks.

Doug Simunic was the manager of the Fargo-Moorhead Redhawks from 1996-2017.

Right-hander Thomas Ray Bryden did not play for the Twins, but was in their minor league system in 1988.  He was born in Moses Lake, Washington, went to high school in Enumclaw, Washington, and was signed by California as a free agent in 1981.  After two ineffective minor league years as a starter, he was moved to the bullpen in 1983.  He did substantially better there, reaching AA in 1984.  He worked mostly in AAA in 1985 and had a bad year, but pitched very well in spring training in 1986 and made the major league team.  Bryden made sixteen appearances with the Angels through early June, going 2-1, 6.55, 1.72 WHIP with 21 walks in 34.1 innings.  He was sent back to AAA after that and did well, but did not make it back to the major leagues.  In 1987, he was still in AAA, posting a record of 9-1 despite a 6.35 ERA and a 1.69 WHIP in 72.1 innings.  The Angels were not fooled by his won-lost record and released him after the season.  Bryden signed with Minnesota and spent 1988 in AAA Portland.  He made 30 appearances there, 13 of them starts, and went 8-8, 4.99, 1.56 WHIP in 113.2 innings.  That brought his playing career to an end.  At last report, T. R. Bryden was living in Clarkston, Washington.

Switch-hitting outfielder Charles Theodore "Chili" Davis was with Minnesota from 1991-1992 and was used almost exclusively as a designated hitter.  He was born in Kingston, Jamaica, one of four major league players to be born in Jamaica.  He attended high school in Los Angeles, and was drafted by San Francisco in the 11th round in 1977.  He hit well in three minor league seasons and made the Giants out of spring training in 1981, but was seldom used and was sent back to AAA in early May.  Davis had a huge year in AAA Phoenix, hitting .350 with 19 homers and an OPS over 1.000.  He was the regular center fielder for the Giants in 1982, and remained a big league regular for the rest of his long career.  He finished fourth in Rookie of the Year voting in 1982, hitting .261 with 19 homers.  His best year as a Giant was 1984, when he hit .315 with 21 home runs and an OPS of .875.  He made his first all-star team that year, making the team again in 1986.  Davis became a free agent after the 1987 season and signed with the California Angels.  He put in three solid seasons for the Angels from 1988-1990.  He received a few MVP votes in 1989, but there was nothing about that season that made it particularly better than his other Angel seasons, as they were all good.  A free agent again after the 1990 campaign, Davis signed with Minnesota.  He had started doing some DH-ing in 1990, and was the regular designated hitter for the Twins for two seasons.  He put up good numbers for the Twins in those two seasons:  he hit .282/.385/.476, with 41 home runs and 159 RBIs.  He finished 14th in MVP voting in 1991, when the Twins won the World Series.  Davis was once more a free agent after the 1992 season, and returned to the California Angels.  He was an Angel for four years this time, and after a disappointing 1993 went on to produce three of his best seasons, hitting over .300 and averaging 25 homers for those years.  He was traded to Kansas City for 1997, the only time in his career he was ever traded.  After a good year there, he became a Yankee for 1998, but was hurt early in the season and missed most of the year.  Healthy again in 1999, Davis had another solid season, hitting .269 with 19 homers at age 39.  He retired after that season.  He has been coaching for several years, three of them with the Australian national baseball team.  He was the batting coach for the Dodgers’ instructional league team in 2010, the batting coach for AAA Pawtucket in 2011, was the batting coach for the Oakland Athletics from 2012-2014, was the batting coach for the Boston Red Sox from 2015-2017, was the batting coach for the Chicago Cubs in 2018, and was the batting coach for the New York Mets from 2019--May, 2021.  No information about what Chili Davis has been doing since then was readily available.

SBG made contact on the first pitch ever thrown to him in an organized baseball game as a seven year old, rolling out to shortstop off of a pitch from his 10 year old cousin. He played baseball for SBGville for 11 years with only moderate success. He was a left handed first baseman for most of those seasons, but making contact was always a problem. His last season was played for the same team that his cousin played for, as SBGville didn't field a team. Jim Kaat used to say that Chili Davis had a slider speed bat. After his baseball career was over, SBG discovered that he has a slowpitch softball speed bat. After not having hit a single homerun as a baseball player (his last at bat ended with a ground rule double), SBG displayed pretty good power, hitting well north of 100 home runs in about 12 years of softball. After his playing career ended, he lived and worked in the Twin Cities area for several years.  He continues to live there, working remotely at a job which is centered in beautiful downtown Fargo.

Right-hander Randy Dobnak came to the Twins in 2019.  He was born in South Park, Pennsylvania, attended Alderson-Broaddus College (the first major league player from that school), and was signed by the Twins as a free agent in 2017.  He had a fine year in Cedar Rapids in 2018 and made a meteoric rise through the Twins' system in 2019.  He made four dominant starts in Fort Myers, continued to dominate in ten starts in Pensacola, was still excellent in seven starts in Rochester, and in August was in the major leagues.  He appeared in nine games for the Twins, pitching a total of 28.1 innings, and went 2-1, 1.59, 1.13 WHIP.  On the strength of that, and because they didn't have any better alternatives, he made a start in the playoffs, which did not go well.  He made ten starts for the Twins in 2020, pitching very well in the first six but poorly in three of the last four.  He was injured much of 2021 and did not pitch well when he could pitch.  He missed most of 2022 due to injury, appearing in just eight AAA games.  He turns twenty-eight today.  He's been a good story, and he appears to be a good guy, but he still has to get healthy and prove he can be a major league pitcher.