1. 1991 Minnesota Twins (95-67)
The 1991 Twins were the clear choice for the greatest in franchise history. The team featured Rookie of the Year Chuck Knoblauch, Manager of the Year Tom Kelly, and three All-Stars in Jack Morris, Rick Aguilera, and Kirby Puckett. The team won more games than anyone else in the AL because they were legitimately better than everyone else.
The hitters were dominant. Kent Hrbek hit 20 home runs, Brian Harper hit .311, Knoblauch stole 25 bases, Chili Davis hit 29 homers, Shane Mack hit .310, and Kirby was Kirby hitting .319 with 89 RBIs. The team was deep too, with Gene Larkin, Randy Bush, and Greg Gagne all offering key contributions.
The pitching was even better. Morris went 18-12 with a 3.43 ERA, Kevin Tapani was 16-9 with a 2.99 ERA, and Scott Erickson was 20-8 with a 3.18 ERA, creating a three-headed monster that ate opposing batters alive. Aguilera had a 2.35 ERA and 42 saves and was baseball’s top closer, with Carl Willis and his 2.63 ERA serving as an elite set-up man. The team was unstoppable.
Minnesota stomped the Toronto Blue Jays in the ALCS, winning 4-1. After that came arguably the greatest World Series of all time. The Twins jumped out to a 2-0 series lead before dropping the next three. In Game 6, Minnesota and the Atlanta Braves went ten and a half innings before Kirby Puckett hit the most important home run in team history.
Jack Buck’s legendary call in Game 6 of the 1991 World Series still gives most Minnesota fans goosebumps. Jack Morris went on to pitch a ten-inning complete-game shutout in Game 7 and Gene Larkin walked it off to give the Twins the greatest moment in team history and earn their spot as the greatest team in franchise history.
No other team had a better combination of a great regular season, elite players (including two Hall of Famers in Puckett and Morris), meaningful playoff baseball, and a title to boot. The 1991 Twins made Twins fans feel good and were fun to watch, making them the #1 team in Twins history.