The Minnesota Twins have had a strong presence in Puerto Rico recently,
so it’s fitting that multiple players have very positive feelings toward the former Puerto Rican Hall of Famer.
The Minnesota Twins have a reputation of scouting well on the island of Puerto Rico. That has led to a depth of players donating time and money back to their home island.
Today is the 45th anniversary of the plane crash that tragically killed Roberto Clemente as he attempted to deliver aid to earthquake victims in Nicaragua. A number of Twins players have been quoted in the past with their admiration for their country’s favorite son.
Minnesota Twins honor Clemente
Minnesota Twins 1B/DH bounced up and down between the majors and minors in 2017, but he made a big impact with one thing when he sported a custom pair of cleats this season:
Vargas is one of four Minnesota Twins players who played with Puerto Rico’s WBC team. The team had multiple fundraisers this season to help raise funds for relief after Hurricane Maria.
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Many in Puerto Rico consider Roberto Clemente in the same realm as African American ball players consider Jackie Robinson. Clemente was a pioneer for the Puerto Rican player along with Orlando Cepeda.
Clemente is highly regarded in part because of the way he finished his career as well. Clemente hit .300 or better every season but one from 1960 until his final season in 1972.
Clemente finished his career with 240 home runs and 440 doubles. In the final month of the 1972 season, Clemente collected his 3,000th hit, a number he would finish at for his career.
The Twins are currently slated to play a series next season in Puerto Rico in April if the field conditions can be made safe. The honor given to Clemente 45 years after his passing should be something pretty incredible to behold!