No. 5- 1979 Catchers
In 1979 the Minnesota Twins went 82-80 on the season and finished 4th in the American League West. A solid season overall, but just not enough to make the playoffs with the playoff format that was in place during the 1979 season. Those Twins did have a good duo taking turns behind the plate.
Butch Wynegar was the primary backstop that season. He appeared in 149 games total and took some days at the DH position when getting a rest from catching duties. During that 1979 season, Wynegar hit .270/.363/.351 with 7 home runs and 20 doubles. It seems strange that in Wynegar’s best professional season he didn’t receive any award consideration even though he was a member of the All-Star team in both 1976 and 1977. The Twins team performance likely had a part in both the inclusions and exclusion from the All-Star squad.
Glenn Borgmann was Wynegar’s backup in 1979. In his final season with the Twins, Borgmann closed the book on a solid eight seasons with the club by hitting .200/.317/.243. Definitely not Borgmann’s most impressive season but after several solid seasons for the Twins he did well to relieve Wynegar from catching duties for 31 games.
As mentioned, Borgmann’s season wasn’t his best and made him good for a -0.1 WAR in 1979. The reason he still gets on this list is in part because of his longevity with the Twins and also what Wynegar was able to do in 1979. Wynegar’s 4.4 WAR buoys this group to a 4.3 combined WAR to number five on the list. He also holds the eighth best WAR by a catcher in a season with his 1979 performance.