Minnesota Twins: The Top Eight Starting Pitchers in Franchise History

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Johan Santana of the Minnesota Twins got his first win of the year against the Kansas City Royals at Kauffman Stadium in Kansas City, Missouri on April 27, 2006. The Twins won 7-3. (Photo by G. N. Lowrance/Getty Images)
Johan Santana of the Minnesota Twins got his first win of the year against the Kansas City Royals at Kauffman Stadium in Kansas City, Missouri on April 27, 2006. The Twins won 7-3. (Photo by G. N. Lowrance/Getty Images) /
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Minnesota Twins
Jim Perry, former pitcher for the Minnesota Twins (Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images) /

No. 8: Minnesota Twins’ Jim Perry

Years with the Minnesota Twins: 1963-1972 (10 Seasons)

Key Stats with the Minnesota Twins: 376 G, 1,883.1 IP, 128-90 W-L, 3.15 ERA, 1,025-541 K-BB, 61 CG, 17 Shutouts, 26.3 WAR, 2-Time All-Star, 1970 Cy Young Award, Two Top-10 Cy Young Finishes, Two Top-25 MVP Finishes, 1965 AL Pennant

While he may not have been a Hall of Famer like his brother, Jim Perry was a star in his own right. the 1970 Cy Young Award winner was a star for the Twins and was a part of the greatest rotation in team history: Mudcat Grant, Jim Kaat, Camilo Pascual, Dave Boswell, and Perry.

Perry ranks eighth in team history in games started, innings pitched, and strikeouts while also ranking sixth in wins and twelfth in ERA. He finished in the top ten of Cy Young voting and MVP voting twice, but his best season came when he brought home the Cy Young in 1970, when he went 24-12 with a 3.04 ERA and earned 168 strikeouts.

Perry helped the team win as well, as the team won the American League Pennant in 1965 and took the American League West in 1969 and 1970 with Perry pitching. Perry’s 26.3 WAR is eighth among all Twins pitchers and his 17 shutouts tie him for seventh in team history, showing his value to the team. He is definitely deserving of the number eight spot.

Minnesota Twins
Camilo Pascual, former player for the Minnesota Twins (Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images) /

No. 7: Minnesota Twins’ Camilo “Little Potato” Pascual

Years with the Minnesota Twins: 1954-1966 (13 Seasons)

Key Stats with the Minnesota Twins: 432 G, 2,465 IP, 145-141 W-L, 3.66 ERA, 1,885-909 K-BB, 119 CG, 31 Shutouts, 33.2 WAR, 5-Time All-Star, Three Top-25 MVP Finishes, 1965 AL Pennant

Camilo Pascual was one of the Minnesota Twins’ longest tenured starters, with the Little Potato starting the fifth most games in team history. Pascual was the best pitcher that the Twins brought with from Washington and played like it, making five All-Star teams over his time with the organization.

Pascual ranks highly on most of the career stats in the franchise, including ranking fifth in wins (145) and WAR (33.2), fourth in innings (2,465), seventh in complete games (119), second in shutouts (31), and third in strikeouts.

Camilo finished in the Top-25 of MVP voting three times and was one of the most reliable pitchers the team had, starting at least sixteen games in all but one of his thirteen seasons. He was the veteran leader of the staff that helped the Twins reach the 1965 World Series, landing him in this seven spot.

Minnesota Twins
Brad Radke of the Minnesota Twins (Photo by Michael Zagaris/MLB Photos via Getty Images) /

No. 6: Minnesota Twins’ Brad Radke

Years with the Minnesota Twins: 1995-2006 (12 Seasons)

Key Stats with the Minnesota Twins: 378 G, 2,451 IP, 148-139 W-L, 4.22 ERA, 1,467-445 K-BB, 37 CG, 10 Shutouts, 45.6 WAR, One-Time All-Star, One Top-10 Cy Young Finish, One Top-25 MVP Finish

One of the more recent Twins on this list, Brad Radke was Mr. Reliable for a Twins rotation that desperately needed consistency. Radke started nine Opening Day games over his career (more than any other Minnesota pitcher), missing only his rookie year, 1998, 2005, and 2006.

Radke never was a truly elite pitcher, with his best season coming in 1997, when he went 20-10 with a 3.87 ERA and only 174 strikeouts. Despite this, Radke was the rock of the rotation, consistently putting out solid seasons when the Twins were going through a turbulent time.

Radke ranks in the top five in Twins history in games started (377), innings (2,451), wins (148), and WAR (45.6), providing consistently good pitching when no one else on the team could. He only made one All-Star team, and finished in the Top-10 of Cy Young and Top-25 of MVP voting once, but he meant a lot to the team.

Radke guided the Twins to their only ALDS victory as he was the only pitcher that series with two wins to match a 1.54 ERA and seven strikeouts. Johan Santana may have taken over as the ace the next year, but Radke’s consistency during a time when the team needed it earns him a spot on this list.

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