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1999 Minnesota Twins season

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Title: 1999 Minnesota Twins season  
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1999 Minnesota Twins season

1999 Minnesota Twins
Major League affiliations
Location
Other information
Owner(s) Carl Pohlad
Manager(s) Tom Kelly
Local television KMSP-TV
Midwest Sports Channel
(Bert Blyleven, Dick Bremer, Paul Molitor)
Local radio 830 WCCO AM
(Herb Carneal, John Gordon)
 < Previous season     Next season  >

The 1999 Minnesota Twins began their season on a positive note, with Brad Radke getting the win in a 6-1 victory over the Toronto Blue Jays. Unfortunately for the Twins, the team finished the season in last place.

Contents

  • Offseason 1
  • Regular season 2
    • Offense 2.1
    • Pitching 2.2
    • Defense 2.3
    • Season standings 2.4
    • Roster 2.5
    • Notable transactions 2.6
  • Player stats 3
    • Batting 3.1
      • Starters by position 3.1.1
      • Other batters 3.1.2
    • Pitching 3.2
      • Starting pitchers 3.2.1
      • Other pitchers 3.2.2
      • Relief pitchers 3.2.3
  • Farm system 4
  • References 5
  • External links 6

Offseason

  • October 2, 1998: Todd Ritchie was released by the Twins.[1]
  • December 14, 1998: Alex Ochoa was traded by the Twins to the Milwaukee Brewers for a player to be named later. The Brewers completed the deal by sending Darrell Nicholas (minors) to the Twins on December 15.[2]
  • December 15, 1998: Melvin Nieves was signed as a free agent by the Twins.[3]
  • December 21, 1998: [4]
  • January 27, 1999: Bob Wells was signed as a free agent by the Twins.[5]
  • February 16, 1999: Bobby Kielty was signed as an amateur free agent by the Twins.[6]
  • March 20, 1999: Melvin Nieves was purchased from the Twins by the Fukuoka Daiei Hawks.[3]
  • March 31, 1999: Dan Serafini was purchased from the Twins by the Chicago Cubs.[7]

Regular season

Seventeen rookies saw playing time for manager Tom Kelly in the 1999 season. Some of these rookies, such as Corey Koskie, Torii Hunter, and Joe Mays, would go on to future success. The season was not without its bright spots, including Doug Mientkiewicz's .997 fielding percentage and Koskie's team-leading .310 batting average. Another bright spot occurred on September 11, when pitcher Eric Milton threw the only no-hitter of his career against an Anaheim Angels team that consisted mainly of September call-ups. However, the euphemism "rebuilding year" must be applied to the Twins’ 1999 campaign.

It was only May 21 when the team's brain trust realized that this would not be a world champion team. On that day, the Twins traded Rick Aguilera, then their highest paid player, to the Chicago Cubs. The team also traded Scott Downs and received Jason Ryan and future starter Kyle Lohse in return. The team finished the season with a 63-97 record, ranked fifth in the American League Central Division. The team's lone all-star representative was Ron Coomer.

  • The lone representative of the Twins in the All-Star Game was second baseman Ron Coomer.

Offense

The offense was not impressive. Minnesota was last in the league in slugging and had only one more walk than the league-worst White Sox. The team leaders were: Coomer with 16 home runs; Cordova with 70 RBI; Koskie with a .310 average; Walker with 148 hits and 37 doubles; and Lawton with 26 stolen bases.

Several players failed to meet expectations offensively. In June, Lawton was hit in the face by a pitch. He missed a month and had trouble finding his swing after returning. Mientkiewicz had a great season batting-wise at the double-A level in 1998, but was not able to follow it up the following year at the major league level.

Team Leaders
Statistic Player Quantity
HR Ron Coomer 16
RBI Marty Cordova 70
BA Todd Walker .279
Runs Chad Allen 69

Pitching

Radke, Milton, and LaTroy Hawkins filled the first three spots in the starting rotation throughout the season. The fourth and fifth spots were less predictable. Mays did emerge as a capable starter midway through the season, making 20 starts. Also making an appreciable number of starts in 1999 were Mike Lincoln (15), Dan Perkins (12), and Jason Ryan (8).

Aguilera started the season as the Twins’ closer and recorded eight saves, but Mike Trombley took over the closer duties in May and finished the season with 24 saves. Trombley, Bob Wells, Travis Miller, Eddie Guardado, and Héctor Carrasco had respectable seasons out of the bullpen.

Overall, the pitching staff allowed the second fewest walks in the American League and had an average ERA.

Team Leaders
Statistic Player Quantity
ERA Brad Radke 3.75
Wins Brad Radke 12
Saves Mike Trombley 24
Strikeouts Eric Milton 163

Defense

Like most of manager Tom Kelly's teams, this one was fundamentally sound. For example, the team committed the third fewest errors in the major leagues in spite of its inexperience.

Chad Allen, Hunter, and Matt Lawton saw consistent playing time in the outfield. However, Jacque Jones saw enough at bats to supplant Allen the following season, leading to the "Soul Patrol" of Jones, Hunter, and Lawton. Terry Steinbach was the starting catcher, with Javier Valentín as his backup. Three of the infield positions were fairly stable, with Mientkiewicz getting the bulk of the time at first base, Todd Walker at second, and Cristian Guzmán at short. Although Coomer was the opening day third baseman, Koskie ended up playing the most games at that position. (Coomer saw time at first when it became apparent that Mientkiewicz was not yet ready to face major-league pitchers.) Brent Gates also saw substantial playing time at third, as well as second. Marty Cordova played in 88 games as the designated hitter.

Season standings

AL Central W L Pct. GB Home Road
Cleveland Indians 97 65 0.599 47–34 50–31
Chicago White Sox 75 86 0.466 21½ 38–42 37–44
Detroit Tigers 69 92 0.429 27½ 38–43 31–49
Kansas City Royals 64 97 0.398 32½ 33–47 31–50
Minnesota Twins 63 97 0.394 33 31–50 32–47


Roster

Notable transactions

Player stats

Batting

Starters by position

Note: Pos = Position; G = Games played; AB = At bats; H = Hits; Avg. = Batting average; HR = Home runs; RBI = Runs batted in
Pos Player G AB H Avg. HR RBI

Other batters

Note: G = Games played; AB = At bats; H = Hits; Avg. = Batting average; HR = Home runs; RBI = Runs batted in
Player G AB H Avg. HR RBI
Davidson, CleatusCleatus Davidson 12 22 3 .136 0 3

Pitching

Starting pitchers

Note: G = Games pitched; IP = Innings pitched; W = Wins; L = Losses; ERA = Earned Run Average; SO = Strikeouts
Player G IP W L ERA SO

Other pitchers

Note: G = Games pitched; IP = Innings pitched; W = Wins; L = Losses; ERA = Earned Run Average; SO = Strikeouts
Player G IP W L ERA SO

Relief pitchers

Note: G = Games pitched; W = Wins; L = Losses; SV = Saves; ERA = Earned Run Average; SO = Strikeouts
Player G W L SV ERA SO

Farm system

Level Team League Manager
AAA Salt Lake Buzz Pacific Coast League Phil Roof
AA New Britain Rock Cats Eastern League John Russell
A Fort Myers Miracle Florida State League Mike Boulanger
A Quad Cities River Bandits Midwest League Jose Marzan
Rookie Elizabethton Twins Appalachian League Jon Mathews
Rookie GCL Twins Gulf Coast League Al Newman
[15]

References

  1. ^ Todd Ritchie page at Baseball Reference
  2. ^ Alex Ochoa page at Baseball Reference
  3. ^ a b Melvin Nieves page at Baseball Reference
  4. ^ a b George Williams page at Baseball Reference
  5. ^ Bob Wells page at Baseball Reference
  6. ^ Bobby Kielty page at Baseball Reference
  7. ^ Dan Serafini page at Baseball Reference
  8. ^ Jack Cressend page at Baseball Reference
  9. ^ Midre Cummings page at Baseball Reference
  10. ^ Rick Aguilera page at Baseball Reference
  11. ^ Frank Rodriguez page at Baseball Reference
  12. ^ Rob Bowen page at Baseball Reference
  13. ^ Justin Morneau page at Baseball Reference
  14. ^ Terry Tiffee page at Baseball Reference
  15. ^ Johnson, Lloyd, and Wolff, Miles, ed., The Encyclopedia of Minor League Baseball, 3rd edition. Durham, N.C.: Baseball America, 2007

External links

  • Diamond Mind's Analysis of the Twins' 1999 season
  • Player stats from www.baseball-reference.com
  • 1999 Standings
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