No. 1- 1964 Twins Outfield
The top of this list should include 1963, 1964, and 1965 versions of the Twins outfield. That would make for a somewhat boring list, so instead the 1964 version of the outfield will claim the top spot, but those others shouldn’t go unmentioned and forgotten in any way! The 1964 Twins went 79-83 finishing 6th in the American League, which doesn’t mean a whole lot but the outfield was phenomenal.
Tony Oliva held down right field and had the 6th best season according to WAR by any Twins outfielder with a 6.8 WAR. He hit .323/.359/.557 with 32 home runs and 43 doubles. Oliva’s performance resulted in his first of eight All-Star appearances, a fourth-place finish in MVP voting, and was the winner of Rookie of the Year.
Bob Allison was primarily the Twins first baseman in 1964 but played in the outfield in 61 games that season (and shows off some leather in the video above). He turned in a season-long WAR that places him 12th best among Twins outfielders. He slashed .287/.404/.553 and added 32 home runs. Allison was awarded an All-Star appearance for his performance and even gained some MVP attention.
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These words feel strange to utter, but Twins legend Harmon Killebrew was the third best outfielder in this 1964 Twins outfield. As the third best outfielder, he turned in the 40th best WAR (4.7) by an outfielder in Twins history. On his way to that place Killebrew hit .270/.377/548 and added a league-leading 49 home runs. Killebrew also made the All-Star game and finished 10th in MVP voting.
Center fielder Jimmie Hall rounds out this group with a 4.0 WAR. Hall hit .282/.338/.480 and added 25 home runs and 20 doubles. At age 26 Hall was also able to earn his first All-Star appearance. In case you haven’t been keeping track, that means all four players had a WAR of 4.0 or higher, 3 of the 4 got MVP votes, the league home run champion and rookie of the year were also thrown in there for good measure.
There are the top five outfield units in Twins history. Is there a unit you would put on this list?