The Minnesota Twins are just 40 days away from Opening Day in Baltimore. As we near that day, here is more Twins history related to that number!
The Minnesota Twins are preparing for a 2018 season with expectation after making the playoffs in 2017 as a Wild Card team. We will highlight numbers from team history that represent the number of days until Opening Day on March 29th in Baltimore.
As we hit the number 40 on our countdown, the former Twins player we will recognize burst onto the major league scene with quite the entrance. He may be remembered in a sense of what could have been based on a struggle with injuries through the rest of his career, but in my memory, I forever will hear the Metrodome PA announcer introducing Marty Cordova.
Cordova was drafted by the Twins in the 10th round of the 1989 draft out of Orange Coast College. Cordova took some time to move through the minor leagues and in 1995 he made his debut with the Twins at the major league level. Cordova gave Twins fans something to cheer about in a season where the team went 56-88 and finished last in the American League Central.
In that 1995 season, Cordova slashed .277/.352/.486 hit 24 home runs, 27 doubles, 3 triples and stole 20 bases. He provided that offensive output after settling in as the Twins regular left fielder. He also hit lefties very well during that season with a slash line of .323/.386/.508 against southpaws.
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Those numbers led Cordova to win the Twins most recent and fifth Rookie of the Year award in franchise history. Cordova edged out the likes of Garret Anderson, Andy Pettitte, and Troy Percival on the way to that award. Fellow Twin, starting pitcher Brad Radke also received consideration for the 1995 Rookie of the Year award.
In 1996, Cordova would pick right back up where he left off. He hit .309/.371/.478 hit 16 home runs, 46 doubles, and drove in 111 runs. From there Cordova struggled with back injuries which limited his ability to get on the field as early as 1997. Over the next three seasons, Cordova would slash .262/.336/.424 for the Twins. After the 1999 season, the Twins would allow Cordova to leave as a free agent and he would sign with the Boston Red Sox.
Cordova would never play for the Red Sox and would instead find a home with the Toronto Blue Jays in 2000. He put together another successful season as a member of the Cleveland Indians in 2001 as he hit .301/.348/.506 and added 20 home runs and 20 doubles. Cordova then finished his career with the Baltimore Orioles in 2002 and 2003 and chose not to play in 2004 after missing most of 2003 due to elbow surgery.
Cordova missed out on Twins team success being part of those dreadful Twins teams of the late ’90s. He did at least give Twins fans something to cheer for as we remember the former Rookie of the Year today, #40 Marty Cordova.