Minnesota Twins: Ranking the 5 Worst Managers in Franchise History

Manager Billy Gardner of the Minnesota Twins (Photo by Focus on Sport/Getty Images)
Manager Billy Gardner of the Minnesota Twins (Photo by Focus on Sport/Getty Images) /
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The Minnesota Twins and Washington Senators have struggled with some poor managers over the years. We rank the five worst.

Over 120 combined years of the Minnesota Twins and Washington Senators, thirty-one men have managed the team. Some, like Tom Kelly and Bucky Harris have been stellar managers, leading the franchise to over 1000 wins and a World Series title. Others did not, costing the franchise lots of wins. We’re here to talk about those guys.

In order to make this list, these managers need to have managed 162 games (a full season) for the franchise and had to truly struggle leading the franchise. In addition, we also are going to cut out managers from before 1922, as the team didn’t have the talent to contend, so their manager statistics are a little off.

With that in mind, let’s take a look at some of the managers to struggle the most, starting with the (dis)honorable mentions.

Minnesota Twins Manager Dishonorable Mentions:

Gene Mauch (1976-1980)

W-L: 378-394 (.490)

Average Finish: 3.6

As far as managers go, Gene Mauch wasn’t that bad. Having a new manager an average of every four years is a better rate than both the New York Yankees and Boston Red Sox, meaning that the Twins don’t have that many truly bad managers.

However, for the purposes of this list we include Mauch. Mauch led the team to an above .500 finish three times, but could never get the team higher than third in their division. In addition, he had 1977 MVP Rod Carew and couldn’t win more than 85 games, so here he is as the honorable mention.

Ossie Bluege (1943-1947)

W-L: 375-394 (.488)

Average Finish: 4.6

Ossie Bluege was an excellent player for the Senators, coming in at No. 34 on our 50 best players list. Bluege came in as the team’s manager just four years after his retirement in 1939. Similar to Mauch, Bluege also was over .500 twice and finished one and a half game out of first in 1945.

However, Bluege also lost 90 games twice, and his time with the Senators ended with one of the worst win-loss percentages by a manager since the first World War. Despite having a strong roster, Bluege struggled, leaving him here.