The Minnesota Twins are just 17 days away from spring training. As we celebrate the end of the blustery temps and the return of the game we love, let’s look at team history surrounding that number.
The Minnesota Twins are preparing for a 2018 season with expectations after making the playoffs in 2017 as a Wild Card. We will have bring out numbers from team history that represent the number of days until spring training from now until pitchers and catchers report on February 13th.
The Minnesota Twins have seen a number of players receive awards for the impressive work they’ve done on the field. Silver Slugger Awards were first given in 1980. Since then, 17 Minnesota Twins have been awarded.
The first Twin to be awarded was Kirby Puckett, who won the first of four straight Silver Sluggers in 1986. Overall Puckett would win 6 Silver Sluggers (1986-1989, 1992, 1994).
Puckett won his last award in 1994, and Chuck Knoblauch took over with his first award as a Twin the next season. He would win another in 1997, oddly not receiving the award in 1996, by far his best year offensively with the Minnesota Twins.
In between Knoblauch’s two awards, current Twins manager Paul Molitor won his last major award of his career when he won the Silver Slugger in 1996.
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The “M&M Boys” won their first Silver Sluggers in 2006. Morneau would go on to win one more in 2008. Mauer won 5 awards in total beginning in 2006, also receiving awards in 2008-2010 and 2013.
The final player that won the Silver Slugger in a Minnesota Twins uniform was Josh Willingham in 2012, when he hit 35 home runs and drove in 110 runs before two seasons of injuries would lead to the end of his career.
There have been a few former Twins who have won Silver Sluggers after leaving the Twins. Gary Gaetti won his award with the Royals in 1995. Torii Hunter won two, one with the Angels and one with the Tigers.
Of course, most Twins fans know of David Ortiz‘s success after leaving Minnesota, winning 7 Silver Slugger Awards in his career.
For 17 days to spring training, we remember the Twins who have been awarded a Silver Slugger Award over the team’s history.
Come soon, spring!!