As the Minnesota Twins coming up on their 120th season, we look back at the five best right fielders in franchise history.
The Minnesota Twins are one of the oldest franchises in baseball, dating back to 1901, when they were the league bottom-dweller known as the Washington Senators. Since that time, the team has won three championships, six pennants, and eleven division titles.
It has also suffered through seven 100+ loss seasons, fourteen playoff defeats, and have lost over 1100 games to the New York Yankees. The team has had some really good seasons, and some really bad seasons. Throughout it all, there have been some excellent players who have carried the team.
These excellent players deserve some recognition , so Puckett’s Pond will be putting together a list of the top players at each position to get ready for the top 50 players of all time. In order to make it on this list, players need to have played over 400 games, been excellent on offense and defense, and played an important role for the team.
The last group of hitters on the list is right field. Right field is the ninth position on the field and the franchise has a long history of really solid right fielders (looking at you Randy Bush), so some were left off the list. With that being said, we’ll start with the honorable mentions.
Minnesota Twins’ Jim Lemon
Years with the Minnesota Twins: 1954-1963 (10 Seasons)
Key Stats with the Minnesota Twins: 915 G, 855 H, 427 R, 159 HR, 509 RBI, 13 SB, 337 BB .265 BA, 7.8 WAR, -9.0 dWAR, Two Top-25 MVP Finishes, One Time All-Star
Jim Lemon barely beats out Randy Bush and former Washington Senator John Stone for the second honorable mention spot because he played ten seasons during an important transition point in franchise history when the team moved from Washington to Minnesota.
Lemon was an All-Star in 1960 when he hit .269 with 38 homers and 100 RBI on his way to racking up a career oWAR of 12.6 and 159 home runs (twelfth in team history). His defense wasn’t good, and the team was disappointing while he was playing there, which keeps him down on the list, but Lemon was solid enough to make the mentions.
Minnesota Twins’ Michael Cuddyer
Years with the Minnesota Twins: 2001-2011 (11 Seasons)
Key Stats with the Minnesota Twins: 1139 G, 1106 H, 606 R, 141 HR, 580 RBI, 52 SB, 411 BB, .272 BA, 12.8 WAR, 20.0 oWAR, -10.1 dWAR, One Top-25 MVP Finish, One Time All-Star
Michael Cuddyer made a huge impact on the Twins’ organization since he was selected ninth overall in 1997. Cuddyer played 1,139 games over eleven seasons and was a fan favorite over his time in Minnesota, making one All-Star team and finishing in the Top-25 MVP voting once as well.
Cuddyer hit 141 home runs and scored 580 RBI with a .272 batting average. He helped the team win six division titles and provided excellent offense finishing with a 20.0 oWAR. His only negative was his porous defense, keeping him just outside of the top five.