The Minnesota Twins were just 11 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.
A number of Minnesota Twins have had the ability to hit towering home runs. Few were able to knock a ball like recently-announced 2018 Hall of Famer Jim Thome, who had by far the best at bats per home run ratio of any Twin ever in a single season, at 11.04 AB/HR in 2010.
Thome hit 612 home runs in his major league career. With 8,422 at bats in his career, Thome had a career AB/HR rate of 13.76. However, as he aged in his career, he became more power-efficient, becoming much more of a three-true outcome player, getting a walk, strikeout, or hitting a ball hard.
When Thome joined the Minnesota Twins before the 2010 season, he enjoyed a year and a half of production in the Twin Cities, clubbing home runs at an elite rate.
His 2010 season would see him hit a home run ever 11.04 at bats, hitting .283/.412/.627 with 25 home runs over 108 games and 340 plate appearances. In 2011, Thome didn’t quite hit at the same rate, but he did eclipse his 600th home run while in a Twins uniform before the Twins sent him to Cleveland for the end of the 2011 season.
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Overall, Thome hit .266/.387/.562 over 179 games with the Twins, smacking 37 home runs and driving in 99 runs.
Thome always hit very well in Minnesota in his career as well. Before the Minnesota Twins opened up their new park, Thome owned the Metrodome, hitting .321/.406/.633 over 92 games, belting 28 home runs in just under 400 plate appearances, knocking home runs at a 12.36 AB/HR rate.
His stellar performance didn’t really drop off with an outdoor stadium in Minnesota, as he hit .261/.392/.577 with 24 home runs over 101 games at Target Field over his career with the Twins and other teams. He hit home runs at an 11.83 AB/HR rate in Target Field.
Thome was also dynamic against the Twins before he joined the team, hitting .314/.415/.635 with 61 home runs over 196 games against the Twins in his career for an AB/HR rate of 11.39 against the Minnesota Twins.
For 11 days to spring training, we remember the lumbering “Paul Bunyan” character, fitting for the Minnesota Twins, Jim Thome, who had an 11 AB/HR rate.
Come soon, spring!!