Happy Birthday–May 26

Due to personal time constraints, this is a reprint from last year which has not been updated.

Jim Frey (1931)
Joe Altobelli (1932)
Jim McKean (1945)
Darrell Evans (1947)
Kevin Kennedy (1954)
Rob Murphy (1960)
Jason Bere (1971)
Chris Latham (1973)
Travis Lee (1975)
Ben Zobrist (1981)
Kevin Mulvey (1985)

Among other things, Jim Frey was manager of Kansas City from 1980-81, manager of the Cubs from 1984-86, and general manager of the Cubs from 1988-91.

Jim McKean was an American League umpire from 1974-2001.  He also played in the CFL for five years.

Kevin Kennedy managed Texas from 1993-94 and Boston from 1995-96.  He has also been a broadcaster for FOX.

Travis Lee was drafted by Minnesota with the second pick of the 1996 draft.  However, the Twins failed to make a formal contract offer within the time designated under the Basic Agreement, and Lee was declared a free agent.

Outfielder/first baseman Joseph Salvatore Altobelli played for the Twins for about two months in 1961.  Born and raised in Detroit, Altobelli signed with Cleveland as a free agent in 1951.  He had decent but unspectacular numbers in the minors, but he certainly was there a long time; Joe Altobelli played all or part of thirteen seasons at AAA.  The best of those seasons were 1960, when he hit .255 with 31 homers with Montreal, and 1965, when he hit .295 with 20 homers with Rochester.  He got a couple of shots at the majors with Cleveland, hitting .200 in 75 at-bats in 1955 and .207 in 87 at-bats in 1957.  He also played in the Pittsburgh organization in 1957, in the White Sox’ chain in 1958, for independent Toronto in 1959, and in the Dodgers’ organization in 1960.  His big season at Montreal that year got the attention of the Twins, and Altobelli was traded to Minnesota with Ed Palmquist for Ernie Oravetz and cash.  Altobelli came up to the Twins on August 1 and stayed the rest of the season.  He was a part-time left fielder for the Twins, hitting .221/.312/.358 in 95 at-bats over 41 games.  The Twins released him after the season.  He went back to the Dodgers’ organization in 1962, then moved to the Baltimore chain in 1963.  This started a long association of Altobelli with the Orioles’ organization, and an even longer associations with the city of Rochester, where the Orioles’ AAA team was at the time.  Altobelli played in Rochester for four seasons.  He then began managing in the Baltimore chain (although he was briefly activated in 1967 and 1970), staying with them through 1976.  For the last six of those seasons, he was the manager of the Rochester Red Wings.  Altobelli then got his first shot at managing in the majors, running the San Francisco Giants from 1977-1979.  He was back in AAA in 1980, managing Columbus, before spending two years as a Yankee coach.  After that, he went back to the Orioles as major league manager (1983-1985), winning the World Series in 1983.  He went back to the Yankees as a coach in 1986, then coached for the Cubs from 1988-1991.  He then returned to Rochester, first as general manager (1991-1993), then as special assistant to the president (1994-1997), and then as a broadcaster for the Red Wings, a position he held from 1998 until he retired in 2009.  He is a member of the International League Hall of Fame.  He remained in Rochester after his retirement, and was known as Rochester's "Mr. Baseball."  Joe Altobelli passed away in Rochester on March 3, 2021.

Outfielder Christopher Joseph Latham played for the Twins in parts of three seasons in the late 1990s.  He was born in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho, went to high school in Henderson, Nevada, and was drafted by the Dodgers in the eleventh round in 1991.  He was in the Dodgers’ system for five years with mixed success, but spent less than one full season above Class A and had only 18 at-bats above AA.  After the 1995 season, Latham was named as the player to be named later in a deal which also sent Ron Coomer, Greg Hansell, and Jose Parra to Minnesota for Mark Guthrie and Kevin Tapani.  Latham was in the Twins’ system for four years, most of it in AAA Salt Lake.  He hit well there, batting over .300 three times and over .320 twice, but could not translate that into major league success.  Latham was with the Twins for the first and last month of 1997, May and December of 1998, and for the first month and a half of 1999.  He did not get regular play, nor did he hit:  his line as a Twin is .152/.222/.188 in 138 at-bats.  After the 1999 season, Latham was traded to Colorado for Scott Randall.  He had a bad year with AAA Colorado Springs in 2000, became a free agent, and signed with Toronto.  Latham had a solid season in AAA in 2001 and was in Toronto for about half the season.  He was again used sparingly but hit well (.274 in 73 at-bats).  Late in 2002 spring training, however, he was placed on waivers and selected by the Mets.  He had a poor year in AAA Norfolk and was released after the season.  The Yankees signed him and he spent the first three weeks of 2003 with them, going 2-for-2, but was released in late April.  Latham went to Japan for the rest of the season, was out of baseball in 2004, played in independent ball in 2005, went to Mexico for 2006, and went back to independent ball for 2007 before his playing career ended.  He was an assistant baseball coach at the College of Southern Nevada in 2010, but resigned in the wake of allegations of wrongdoing against the head coach, Chris Sheff.  He was the owner of a Baskin-Robbins franchise in the Las Vegas area.  He was also a baseball coach at Bishop Gorman High School in Las Vegas, but does not appear to hold that position any longer.  He was also involved in TopRecruit.com, which creates personalized player profiles which "allows athletes and parents to take advantage of today's technology and control how players will be seen."

Right-hander Kevin John Mulvey appeared in two games for the Twins in 2009.  He was born in Parlin, New Jersey, went to high school in Edison, New Jersey, and then attended Villanova before being drafted by the Mets in the second round in 2006.  He pitched well in the minors for them for two seasons, reaching as high as AAA for one game in 2007.  Mulvey came to the Twins with Deolis Guerra, Carlos Gomez, and Philip Humber for Johan Santana in the 2007-2008 off-season.  He had a couple of decent years for the Rochester Red Wings, going 12-17, 3.85 with a WHIP of 1.37.  He made two appearances for the Twins in July of 2009, allowing four runs on six hits in an inning and a third.  On September 1 of that year, he was sent to Arizona to complete a trade for Jon Rauch.  Mulvey made six appearances for the Diamondbacks in 2009, four of them starts.  He made two appearances for Arizona in 2010 but spent most of the year at AAA Reno, where he did not do particularly well.  He was back in Reno in 2011 and so did worse.  He was released in February of 2012 by the Diamondbacks and signed with the Mets, who sent him to AA.  He pitched in relief there, his first shot at a bullpen role, and it did not go well.  In late May, Kevin Mulvey retired.   Kevin Mulvey became the pitching coach and recruiting coordinator for Villanova University baseball in 2013 and became the head baseball coach there in July of 2016.