1981 Minnesota Twins season
|1981 Minnesota Twins|
|combined 41-68, seventh in the AL Western Division|
|Major League affiliations|
|Owner(s)||Calvin Griffith (majority owner, with Thelma Griffith Haynes)|
|General manager(s)||Calvin Griffith|
|Manager(s)||Johnny Goryl, Billy Gardner|
(Bob Kurtz, Larry Osterman)
830 WCCO AM |
(Herb Carneal, Frank Quilici)
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The 1981 Minnesota Twins finished a combined 41-68, seventh in the American League West. In the strike split season, the Twins were 17-39, seventh place in the first half and 24-29, fourth place in the second half. 469,090 fans attended Twins games, the lowest total in the American League. It was also their 21st and final season at Metropolitan Stadium, before moving their home games to the Metrodome the next season. The franchise would not play another outdoor home game until 2010, when Target Field opened.
- December 8, 1980: Dave Edwards was traded by the Twins to the San Diego Padres for Chuck Baker.
- December 8, 1980: Jack O'Connor was drafted by the Twins from the Montreal Expos in the rule 5 draft.
- December 12, 1980: Willie Norwood was traded by the Twins to the Seattle Mariners for Byron McLaughlin.
- March 27, 1981: Bombo Rivera was released by the Twins.
- March 30, 1981: Ken Landreaux was traded by the Twins to the Los Angeles Dodgers for Mickey Hatcher, Kelly Snider (minors), and Matt Reeves (minors).
On August 24, first baseman Kent Hrbek made his major league debut, in a Yankee Stadium game. His twelfth-inning home run beat the Yankees 3-2. Later that week, Herbie was topped by catcher Tim Laudner, who debuted on August 28 and hit home runs in his first two games.
On September 20, Gary Gaetti made his major league debut and started at third base for the Twins. In his first at bat in the second inning, he homered off Texas Rangers pitcher Charlie Hough to become the third Twin to homer in his first-ever at bat. Gaetti joined Rick Renick (1968) and Dave McKay (1975). Later, Andre David (1984) and Eddie Rosario (2015) will join the trio in Twins history.
The Twins played their final game at Metropolitan Stadium on September 30, losing 5-2 to the Kansas City Royals. The club played their last outdoor home game for the next twenty-eight seasons in 56-degree temperature in front of 15,900 fans. "The Met" had been the Twins' home since their Minnesota opener on April 21, 1961 (also a loss). Gary Ward had the final Twins hit in the Met, a single in the ninth inning. Pete Mackanin homered in the second for the final Twins Met Stadium home run.
Reliever Doug Corbett was the Twins' only bright spot on the mound, racking up 17 saves.
|Chicago White Sox||54||52||0.509||8½||25–24||29–28|
|Kansas City Royals||50||53||0.485||11||19–28||31–25|
First Half Standings
|Chicago White Sox||31||22||.585|
|Kansas City Royals||20||30||.400|
Record vs. opponents
1981 American League Records
- June 8, 1981: Frank Viola was drafted by the Twins in the 2nd round of the 1981 Major League Baseball draft.
- August 23, 1981: Ron Jackson was traded by the Twins to the Detroit Tigers for a player to be named later. The Tigers completed the deal by sending Tim Corcoran to the Twins on September 4.
- August 30, 1981: Jerry Koosman was traded by the Twins to the Chicago White Sox for Ivan Mesa (minors), Ronnie Perry (minors), a player to be named later, and cash. The White Sox completed the trade by sending Randy Johnson to the Twins on September 2.
|1981 Minnesota Twins|
Starters by position
Note: Pos = Position; G = Games played; AB = At Bats; H = Hits; Avg. = Batting Average; HR = Home Runs; RBI = Runs Batted In
LEAGUE CHAMPIONS: Orlando
- Dave Edwards page at Baseball Reference
- Jack O'Connor page at Baseball Reference
- Willie Norwood page at Baseball Reference
- Bombo Rivera page at Baseball Reference
- Ken Landreaux page at Baseball Reference
- Frank Viola page at Baseball Reference
- Ron Jackson page at Baseball Reference
- Jerry Koosman page at Baseball Reference