Tag Archives: featured

Johan Santana Region: #4 vs. #13

4. Span Triples Down the Line

In 2008, with six games left in the season, the Twins were behind the White Sox by two and a half games. Fortunately, their last six games were at home, with three against the Sox. They won the first two games of the series to keep their season alive, and one more win against the Sox would put them in first place.

The Sox staked themselves to an early 6-1 lead, which took the wind out of the sails of most Twins fans watching. But they slowly crept back, and were down 6-4 entering the bottom of the 8th. Brendan Harris double to start the frame, and with one out, Carlos Gomez singled to bring the game within one. Up next was Denard Span, and Dick Bremer came through with the call of his career.

13. Carlos Silva Throws 74-Pitch Complete Game

On May 20, 2005, Silva struck out three batters in a nine-inning game and still got twenty-seven outs while allowing only five baserunners.  It was a magic trick that not even the magician could explain.  The Twins beat the Brewers 5-1 and Silva was barely warmed up after tossing 74 pitches.

The Better Moment

  • Span Triples Down the Line (75%, 9 Votes)
  • Carlos Silva 74-Pitch CG (25%, 3 Votes)

Total Voters: 12

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The Better Moment

  • Santana Outduels Mussina in ALDS (69%, 11 Votes)
  • Jacque Jones Breaks Up Garcia's No-No (31%, 5 Votes)

Total Voters: 16

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The Better Moment

  • A.J. Goes Yard (69%, 11 Votes)
  • Joe Crede Walk-Off Grand Slam (31%, 5 Votes)

Total Voters: 16

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The Better Moment

  • Twins Win 87 World Series (100%, 17 Votes)
  • Rincon Induces Triple Play (0%, 0 Votes)

Total Voters: 17

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Johan Santana Region: #5 vs. #12

5. Santana Shuts Down Yankees in ALDS in 2004

The whole game is on YouTube if you want to watch it, though it's kind of a tease given the Yankees have beat the Twins in 947 consecutive games since.  Johan just completely shut down the Yankee lineup, allowing just 10 baserunners in 7 innings.  Rincon and Nathan continued to shut them down after that.

Mussina allowed even fewer baserunners than Johan did, but he didn't spread them out as nicely.  Jacque Jones also hit a dinger off him.

Anyway, Santana was awesome.

12. Jacque Jones Breaks Up Freddy Garcia's No-Hitter

Both moments today involve Santana giving up no runs and Jacque Jones hitting a homer.  I guess you have to figure out which one was better!

The Better Moment

  • Santana Outduels Mussina in ALDS (69%, 11 Votes)
  • Jacque Jones Breaks Up Garcia's No-No (31%, 5 Votes)

Total Voters: 16

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The Better Moment

  • A.J. Goes Yard (69%, 11 Votes)
  • Joe Crede Walk-Off Grand Slam (31%, 5 Votes)

Total Voters: 16

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The Better Moment

  • Twins Win 87 World Series (100%, 17 Votes)
  • Rincon Induces Triple Play (0%, 0 Votes)

Total Voters: 17

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Johan Santana Region: #8 vs. #9

8. AJ Goes Yard in ALDS

I was just about to graduate from college and would be moving into my first apartment three months later. I was at my Dad’s house at the time and we watched this game together.

I honestly had not been paying close attention to the Twins going into 2001, and without the minor league info we get today on the internet, I had no clue there were budding stars in the making. So when I looked at the standings in April, I was dumbfounded. I began listening to every game on the radio and got hooked on the Twins all over again. Despite falling back late that year, I was geared up for 2002. For the entire month of April, I managed to score every single game while also doing homework. The first game of the season, with Jacque Jones leading off the year with a homer on the way to the Twins edging the Tigers in a slugfest, ensured I’d be hooked.

I was on edge this entire game until A.J. deposited a first-pitch Billy Koch fastball into the bleachers. I screamed so loudly I nearly gave the cat a heart attack. Of course, I’d be on the edge of my seat again in the bottom of the 9th with a heart-attack performance by Everyday Eddie. And while I also got excited when Denny Hocking caught the final pop fly to send the Twins to the ALCS, this call by Jon Miller is the one that still gets my blood flowing.

9. Joe Crede Walk-Off Grand Slam

What’s better than Dick Bremer announcing a grand slam? Dick Bremer announcing a walk-off grand slam. In extra innings.

Crede wasn’t much his final year in the bigs. But the Twins one the central by one game, so at least you can say he won this one.

The Better Moment

  • A.J. Goes Yard (69%, 11 Votes)
  • Joe Crede Walk-Off Grand Slam (31%, 5 Votes)

Total Voters: 16

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The Better Moment

  • Twins Win 87 World Series (100%, 17 Votes)
  • Rincon Induces Triple Play (0%, 0 Votes)

Total Voters: 17

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Johan Santana Region: #1 vs. #16

1. Twins Win Their First World Series

16. Juan Rincon Induces  a 4-3-5 Triple Play.

Considering the Twins won this game and the division by just one game, this turned out to a pretty important play.  Mostly, I just thought it was hilarious.

2006: On May 14, just 13 days earlier, the Twins hit into a triple play against the White Sox. Luis Castillo was the batter (on a bunt pop) in the Chicago game and one of the fielders in Minnesota’s fielding trifecta. “I said, ‘We got it!'” Castillo said after turning the trick against Seattle. “Last time, they got me. Now we got the other team.” Against the Mariners, Juan Rincon entered the game to face Kenji Johjima, who hit a grounder to second on the first pitch. Castillo fielded the ball, tagged out Adrian Beltre then threw to first to get Johjima. First baseman Justin Morneau noticed Carl Everett was leaning the wrong way off third base and fired a strike to Tony Batista, the third baseman tagging out Everett to complete the triple play. Said Rincon: “Seeing this one is fun. Seeing the other one is not fun.” Johjima had perhaps the most interesting comment: “This wasn’t the first time that’s happened to me,” he said through an interpreter.”

The Better Moment

  • Twins Win 87 World Series (100%, 17 Votes)
  • Rincon Induces Triple Play (0%, 0 Votes)

Total Voters: 17

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Kent Hrbek Region: #2 vs. #15

#2  Hrbek Hits Grand Slam in Game 6

For the longest time, I thought that Hrbek won game six for the Twins. As it turns out, the REALLY big hit came from Don Baylor the inning before, and the game-winning RBI went to Steve Lombardozzi. But one could argue that Hrbek guaranteed the victory.

Dan Gladden’s grand slam in game one was improbable, but what happened in the sixth inning here was nigh impossible. With one out and the bases loaded, Bob Forsch got Brunansky to pop out. Up next was Hrbek, so Whitey Herzog very correctly called in Ken Dayley to face him. Here were their respective splits that season:

Hrbek versus lefties: 225/290/370, 6 homers in 138 at bats.
Dayley versus lefties: 247/337/301, 0 homers in 73 at bats.

The last time Dayley had given up a homer to a lefty was October, 1985 to Darryl Strawberry. Hell, Dayley had only given up three PERIOD since that homer to Strawberry. He was way more likely to throw Hrbek four straight balls. Hrbek had been pretty brutal all postseason long, especially against lefties.

McGee Goes Back!

Man, I got shivers again.

#15  Hicks Shows Off His Cannon

So he misplayed the bounce a little bit, but I love how nonchalant he is, like it's a forgone conclusion Wells was going to be out.

The Better Moment

  • Hrbek Grand Slam (94%, 15 Votes)
  • Hicks Cannon (6%, 1 Votes)

Total Voters: 16

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The Better Moment

  • Brad Radke Wins #20 (82%, 14 Votes)
  • Jack Morris Escapes Jam in 5th Inning (18%, 3 Votes)

Total Voters: 17

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The Better Moment

  • 3-2-3 Double Play (83%, 15 Votes)
  • Winfield's 3000th hit (17%, 3 Votes)

Total Voters: 18

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The Better Moment

  • Hrbek Tags Out Gant (80%, 16 Votes)
  • Bobby Korecky: First Hit, First Win (20%, 4 Votes)

Total Voters: 20

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The Better Moment

  • Eric Milton No-Hitter (50%, 10 Votes)
  • Juan Berenguer Saves ALCS Game 2 (50%, 10 Votes)

Total Voters: 20

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The Better Moment

  • Pedro Munoz Walks Off in 22nd Inning (68%, 13 Votes)
  • Twins Win 15 In A Row (32%, 6 Votes)

Total Voters: 19

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The Better Moment

  • Larkin Walks It Off (96%, 22 Votes)
  • Mike Sweeney Pops Into Infield Fly Double Play, Gets Nailed by Dougie (4%, 1 Votes)

Total Voters: 23

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Kent Hrbek Region: #7 vs. #10

I really dislike these cloying retrospectives from the Twins and Dick Bremer but it's the video I got.

7. Jack Morris Escapes Jam in 5th inning of Game 7

One could argue the entire game was a moment for Jack Morris, but it's not like he was brilliant.  He just was solid and escaped a few jams, thanks to some luck (thanks Lonnie Smith), some bad hitting, and a lot of guile.  But his work in the 5th inning was pretty excellent, and I love his reaction when he strikes out Gant.

10. Brad Radke wins his 20th game

Brad Radke might be my favorite pitcher.  Even when I barely paid attention to the Twins in the 90's, I paid attention to what he was doing.  He had a lot of solid games in his career.  There's the ALDS against the A's.  There's pitching with a torn labrum in 2006 to help the Twins make the playoffs.  And I'll always fondly remember him for being terrible in the first inning before settling down.

Since I couldn't pick a single moment, him winning his 20th game of the year for a terrible team by pitching ten innings with Paul Molitor driving in the game-winning run with a triple (Brent Brede scoring!) seemed as good as any.  Might I say he's also one very good looking dude.

The Better Moment

  • Brad Radke Wins #20 (82%, 14 Votes)
  • Jack Morris Escapes Jam in 5th Inning (18%, 3 Votes)

Total Voters: 17

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The Better Moment

  • 3-2-3 Double Play (83%, 15 Votes)
  • Winfield's 3000th hit (17%, 3 Votes)

Total Voters: 18

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The Better Moment

  • Hrbek Tags Out Gant (80%, 16 Votes)
  • Bobby Korecky: First Hit, First Win (20%, 4 Votes)

Total Voters: 20

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The Better Moment

  • Eric Milton No-Hitter (50%, 10 Votes)
  • Juan Berenguer Saves ALCS Game 2 (50%, 10 Votes)

Total Voters: 20

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The Better Moment

  • Pedro Munoz Walks Off in 22nd Inning (68%, 13 Votes)
  • Twins Win 15 In A Row (32%, 6 Votes)

Total Voters: 19

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The Better Moment

  • Larkin Walks It Off (96%, 22 Votes)
  • Mike Sweeney Pops Into Infield Fly Double Play, Gets Nailed by Dougie (4%, 1 Votes)

Total Voters: 23

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Kent Hrbek Region: #4 vs. #13

#4: Hrbek Tags Out Gant.

We talked about this a lot just last week.  I'm just grateful it happened before instant replay.  Not because of it could have been overturned.  It just would have been nauseating sitting through it.

#13 Bobby Korecky Gets His First Career Hit And His First Career Win

On May 19, 2008, the Twins were a game out of first place in a very crowded AL Central.  In a back-and-forth game against the Rangers, the Twins tied in the 9th thanks to a Joe Mauer single.  However, due to Mike Redmond pinch-hitting for Adam Everett (my word) and  Craig Monroe pinch-hitting for Alexi Casilla (oh man), Gardy lost the DH after the 9th inning (at least Monroe walked and scored the tying run!).  Howie Clark filled in at second base and DH Brendan Harris went to short.

Korecky relieved Juan Rincon in the 11th and helped him escape a bases loaded jam with one out.  And then in the bottom half he promptly banged a single to right.  In fact, he was on 3rd base as the winning run with just one out when Morneau and Cuddyer were shut down (as they had been all game).

No worries, though.  Korecky pitched a 1-2-3 ninth against Josh Hamilton, Milton Bradley, and David Murphy.  And then in the bottom half, Carlos Gomez (who had started on the bench due to an injury) singled and scored on Howie Clark's final hit of his career.

The Better Moment

  • Hrbek Tags Out Gant (80%, 16 Votes)
  • Bobby Korecky: First Hit, First Win (20%, 4 Votes)

Total Voters: 20

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The Better Moment

  • Eric Milton No-Hitter (50%, 10 Votes)
  • Juan Berenguer Saves ALCS Game 2 (50%, 10 Votes)

Total Voters: 20

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The Better Moment

  • Pedro Munoz Walks Off in 22nd Inning (68%, 13 Votes)
  • Twins Win 15 In A Row (32%, 6 Votes)

Total Voters: 19

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The Better Moment

  • Larkin Walks It Off (96%, 22 Votes)
  • Mike Sweeney Pops Into Infield Fly Double Play, Gets Nailed by Dougie (4%, 1 Votes)

Total Voters: 23

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Kent Hrbek Region: #5 vs. #12

#5 Eric Milton No-Hits the Angels

Like most of us I assume I was not paying much attention to the Twins in 1999.  I had just started my first year of college the week before and they hadn't been good in so long I barely knew who was on the team.  Honestly, when I read the paper the next day I'm pretty sure I thought, "Who's Eric Milton?" Turned out he was pretty decent and his trade continued the amazing Knoblauch trade tree.

Anyway, here's another glorious call by Herb Carneal.

#12 Señor Smoke Strikes Out Four Batters, Saves ALCS Game 2

In the 8th inning Blyleven allowed a homer to Lou Whitaker and a single to Darrell Evans and Kelly pulled him in favor of Berenguer.  While this kind of save situation would normally not make a manager nervous, the Twins bullpen in '87 outside of Berenguer and late season Reardon was pretty abysmal.  And the Tigers offense was a juggernaut.

Berenguer struck out Kirk Gibson and got Alan Trammell to ground out to end the threat.  And then in the 9th he turned into a modern day reliever by getting Matt Nokes, Chet Lemon, and Pat Sheridan to strike out to put the Twins up 2-0 heading to Detroit.

You can watch the whole game on YouTube of course.  Here's a snippet that includes more great announcing by Carneal.

The Better Moment

  • Eric Milton No-Hitter (50%, 10 Votes)
  • Juan Berenguer Saves ALCS Game 2 (50%, 10 Votes)

Total Voters: 20

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The Better Moment

  • Pedro Munoz Walks Off in 22nd Inning (68%, 13 Votes)
  • Twins Win 15 In A Row (32%, 6 Votes)

Total Voters: 19

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The Better Moment

  • Larkin Walks It Off (96%, 22 Votes)
  • Mike Sweeney Pops Into Infield Fly Double Play, Gets Nailed by Dougie (4%, 1 Votes)

Total Voters: 23

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Kent Hrbek Region: #8 vs. #9

#8 Twins Defeat Cleveland in Extra Innings, Win 15th In A Row

Jeff talked about the game here.  The game where the streak was snapped was more memorable, but I do remember as a kid feeling after fifteen wins that this team was invincible and could win it all.  I was so bummed out when they lost the next night.

#9 Pedro Munoz Hits Walk-Off Jack in the 22nd Inning

Video here.  Though I have to say, watching Greg Gagne make that diving catch might be even more fun.  Man, he was good in the field.  This is tied for the longest game in Twins history.  I love that Munoz just sort of walks up to home plate.  No jumping.  No yelling.  No Gatorade bath.  He just steps on the plate and everyone gives him some gentlemanly congratulations before presumably falling asleep.

The Better Moment

  • Pedro Munoz Walks Off in 22nd Inning (68%, 13 Votes)
  • Twins Win 15 In A Row (32%, 6 Votes)

Total Voters: 19

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Kent Hrbek Region: #1 vs. #16

#1 Seed: Larkin Walks It Off

#16 Seed: Mike Sweeney Pops Into Infield Fly Double Play, Gets Nailed by Dougie

On May 30th, 2004 the Twins defeated the Royals like they often did, and this time with the help of some confused Royals baserunners. I can't find any video of the play, but thankfully, Batgirl reenacted everything with Legos! Click on the link to see the play in all its glory.

The Better Moment

  • Larkin Walks It Off (96%, 22 Votes)
  • Mike Sweeney Pops Into Infield Fly Double Play, Gets Nailed by Dougie (4%, 1 Votes)

Total Voters: 23

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