Semi-Final #2: 1969 Twins vs 1991 Twins

This is the sixth series in a Diamond Mind tournament involving eight of the best teams in franchise history.

Round 1
1965 Twins 4
1987 Twins 2

1933 Nationals 3
2006 Twins 4

1969 Twins 4
1924 Nationals 2

1991 Twins 4
2002 Twins 3

Semi-Finals
1965 Twins 4
2006 Twins 2

1969 Twins
1991 Twins

Game 1 @ Met Stadium
Shane Mack’s RBI double in the eighth off of Al Worthington put the 1991 Twins ahead for good in a 6-4 victory in Game 1. The 1991 team had a 4-0 lead heading into the seventh, in part due to a Mike Pagliarulo two-run home run off of Jim Perry. The 1969 team finally got to Jack Morris in the bottom of the seventh when Rich Reese hit a two-run double and Tony Oliva followed with a two-run single. Mark Guthrie earned the win in relief, and Rick Aguilera worked around a walk in the ninth to earn the save. 1991 Twins lead 1-0.

Game 2 @ Met Stadium
A rare Greg Gagne error was a key in a 3-1 victory for the 1969 Twins. With the score tied 1-1 in the bottom of the sixth with one out and Harmon Killebrew at second, Gagne overthrew Hrbek on a routine grounder. Killebrew scored the go-ahead run and Oliva advanced to second. Oliva eventually score when Nettles singled, giving the 1969 Twins a 3-1 lead, a score that would hold. Both Kevin Tapani and Dave Boswell pitched complete games, and Harmon Killebrew started things off with a solo home run in the first. Series tied 1-1.

Game 3 @ Metrodome
The 1969 Twins roughed up Scott Erickson, scoring three runs in the first inning and six runs in the fourth in an eventual 13-5 win. Reese and Nettles each had three RBI, while Puckett went 4-for-5 and Knoblauch had three RBI in the losing effort. Jim Kaat allowed three runs over eight innings pitched to earn the win. 1969 Twins lead 2-1.

Game 4 @ Metrodome
Pagliarulo and Gagne each homered in a 7-2 victory for the 1991 Twins. The 1969 Twins had an early 2-0 lead off of Jack Morris, but the 1991 team took the lead for good in the fifth when Gagne hit his two-run home run off of Jim Perry. Pagliarulo added his own two-run shot in the seventh. Leo Cardenas went deep off of Jack Morris in the fourth inning. Series tied 2-2.

Game 5 @ Metrodome
For the second time in the series, Boswell and Tapani locked into a pitcher’s duel, and for the second time an error was the key to victory. This time, however, Tapani and the 1991 Twins came out on top. Down 1-0 in the bottom of the sixth, Kirby Puckett doubled with one out. Kent Hrbek lined a single between third and short, and Puckett got the green light to try and score off of Nettles’ arm. Nettled threw a perfect strike to Roseboro that beat Puckett to the plate by a good margin, but the catcher couldn’t handle the ball; an error which allowed the tying run to score. Hrbek would later score on a Harper ground out to put the 1991 Twins ahead 2-1. That was enough for Tapani, who held the ’69 lineup to just three hits in 7 1/3 innings pitched. Rick Aguilera finished the game to earn his second save of the series. 1991 Twins lead 3-2.

Game 6 @ Met Stadium
For the first time in the series, a game went into extra innings. Rich Reese was the hero, his RBI single in the bottom of the 12th off of Terry Leach sent this series to a seventh game. Reese homered off of Erickson earlier in the game as well. Scott Leius hit a three-run home run off of Kaat to start the scoring in the second inning, and Reese’s two-run shot cut into that lead in the fourth. The 1991 Twins scored twice in the seventh, and inning that seemed to last forever due to two rain delays, the last of which went 45 minuted and forced Tom Kelly to remove Scott Erickson who had pitched well. Mark Guthrie and Steve Bedrosian allowed the 1969 team to tie the score in the bottom of the seventh, the biggest blow being a two RBI double by Rod Carew. Series tied 3-3.

Game 7 @ Met Stadium
Jack Morris allowed just one run on seven hits in a complete game victory that sent the 1991 Twins to the championship round. The Twins scored two in the top of the fourth, and, as it turned out, that would have been enough the way Morris was pitching. Shane Mack tacked on two insurance runs when he homered in the eighth inning off of Jim Perry, making the final score 4-1. The lone run for the 1969 team came when Rod Carew scored on a sacrifice fly after tripling to start the inning. 1991 Twins win 4-3.

Series MVP: Jack Morris 2-0 2.91 ERA, CG win in Game 7

Raw Data
The two teams were even, 50-50, after 100 games. They played three more series to break the tie, and the 1991 Twins won two of the three. Here are the numbers from the first 100:

1991 Twins in 4: 8 1969 Twins in 4: 5
1991 Twins in 5: 9 1969 Twins in 5: 18
1991 Twins in 6: 16 1969 Twins in 6: 9
1991 Twins in 7: 17 1969 Twins in 7: 18

And the playoff:

1. 1991 Twins in 6
2. 1969 Twins in 7
3. 1991 Twins in 7

At the end of 100 series, the 1969 Twins had won two more games than the 1991 team (292-290). After the playoff, the series is even, 301-301. This is one that truly could have gone either way.

The Finals start Saturday.

Game 7 Boxscore below the fold.

6/21/2007, Min91-Min69, Metropolitan Stadium

                       1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9     R  H  E   LOB DP
1991 Twins             0  0  0  2  0  0  0  2  0     4 11  0    10  4
1969 Twins             0  0  0  0  0  1  0  0  0     1  7  1     5  1

Twins                AB  R  H BI  D  T HR BB  K SB CS IW HP SH SF   AVG   PO  A  E PB
Gladden           lf  5  0  3  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  .259    4  0  0  0
Knoblauch         2b  5  1  2  0  1  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  .281    3  7  0  0
Puckett           cf  5  1  1  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  .333    0  0  0  0
Hrbek             1b  5  0  2  1  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  .310   13  0  0  0
Harper            c   4  1  1  1  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  1  0  0  .214    1  0  0  0
Mack              rf  4  1  1  2  0  0  1  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  .308    2  0  0  0
Pagliarulo        3b  3  0  1  0  0  0  0  1  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  .500    0  3  0  0
Gagne             ss  4  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  1  0  0  0  0  0  0  .222    4  6  0  0
Morris            p   3  0  0  0  0  0  0  1  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  .167    0  0  0  0
                     38  4 11  4  1  0  1  2  1  0  0  0  1  0  0         27 16  0  0

Twins                AB  R  H BI  D  T HR BB  K SB CS IW HP SH SF   AVG   PO  A  E PB
Carew             2b  4  1  2  0  0  1  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  .414    8  3  0  0
Uhlaender         cf  3  0  1  1  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  1  .258    3  0  0  0
Killebrew         3b  4  0  1  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  .185    0  3  1  0
Reese             1b  2  0  2  0  0  0  0  2  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  .310    7  2  0  0
Oliva             rf  3  0  0  0  0  0  0  1  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  .296    3  0  0  0
Nettles           lf  4  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  .273    2  0  0  0
Cardenas          ss  2  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  .280    1  4  0  0
 Manuel           ph  1  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  .000    0  0  0  0
 Renick           ss  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  .000    0  0  0  0
Roseboro          c   3  0  1  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  .192    2  0  0  0
Perry             p   3  0  0  0  0  0  0  0  1  0  0  0  0  0  0  .200    1  2  0  0
                     29  1  7  1  0  1  0  3  1  0  0  0  0  0  1         27 14  1  0

Twins                            INN  H  R ER BB  K PCH STR   BF HR IW HP WP DP   ERA
Morris           W 2-0           9.0  7  1  1  3  1 107  69   33  0  0  0  1  4  2.91
                                 9.0  7  1  1  3  1 107  69   33  0  0  0  1  4 

Twins                            INN  H  R ER BB  K PCH STR   BF HR IW HP WP DP   ERA
Perry            L 0-2           9.0 11  4  4  2  1 119  78   41  1  0  1  0  1  4.57
                                 9.0 11  4  4  2  1 119  78   41  1  0  1  0  1 

Min: Manuel batted for Cardenas in the 7th
     Renick inserted at ss in the 8th

GWRBI: Hrbek
Temperature: 87, Sky: clear, Wind: left to right at 9 MPH.
                       1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9     R  H  E   LOB DP
1991 Twins             0  0  0  2  0  0  0  2  0     4 11  0    10  4
1969 Twins             0  0  0  0  0  1  0  0  0     1  7  1     5  1

Score O Rnr BS  Event
----- - --- --  -----

**************  Top of the 1st inning, Twins batting
 0-0  0 --- 00  Gladden lined a single to right center (X)
 0-0  0 1-- 00  Knoblauch grounded to third, forcing Gladden at second,
                  Knoblauch to first (X)
 0-0  1 1-- 10  Puckett grounded into a double play, Perry to Carew to
                  Reese (BX)

**************  Bottom of the 1st inning, Twins batting
 0-0  0 --- 22  Carew grounded out to second (BSSBX)
 0-0  1 --- 00  Uhlaender lined a single to center (X)
 0-0  1 1-- 11  Killebrew grounded into a double play, Gagne to Hrbek
                  (1FBX)

**************  Top of the 2nd inning, Twins batting
 0-0  0 --- 11  Hrbek flied out to left (FBX)
 0-0  1 --- 10  Harper grounded out to short (BX)
 0-0  2 --- 00  Mack grounded out to first (X)

**************  Bottom of the 2nd inning, Twins batting
 0-0  0 --- 22  Reese grounded a single between first and second (CBFBX)
 0-0  0 1-- 21  Morris threw a wild pitch, Reese to second (BFBB)
 0-0  0 -2- 32  Oliva walked (BFBB.FFB)
 0-0  0 12- 00  Nettles grounded to second, forcing Oliva at second,
                  Reese to third, Nettles to first (X)
 0-0  1 1-3 01  Cardenas grounded into a double play, Gagne to Knoblauch
                  to Hrbek (CX)

**************  Top of the 3rd inning, Twins batting
 0-0  0 --- 01  Pagliarulo reached on an infield single to first (CX)
 0-0  0 1-- 00  Gagne popped out to first (X)
 0-0  1 1-- 31  Morris flied out to center (SbBBBX)
 0-0  2 1-- 11  Gladden grounded to short, forcing Pagliarulo at second
                  (1FBX)

**************  Bottom of the 3rd inning, Twins batting
 0-0  0 --- 01  Roseboro flied out to left (CX)
 0-0  1 --- 00  Perry grounded out to third (X)
 0-0  2 --- 11  Carew flied out to left (CBX)

**************  Top of the 4th inning, Twins batting
 0-0  0 --- 12  Knoblauch lined a double down the right field line (CBCX)
 0-0  0 -2- 00  Puckett bunted for a single, Knoblauch to third (Xb)
 0-0  0 1-3 10  Hrbek lined a single down the left field line, Knoblauch
                  scored, Puckett to third (BX)
 1-0  0 1-3 12  Harper grounded to short, forcing Hrbek at second,
                  Puckett scored, Hrbek out at second, Harper to first
                  (BFFX)
 2-0  1 1-- 11  Mack flied out to center (BFX)
 2-0  2 1-- 02  Pagliarulo grounded to short, forcing Harper at second
                  (CFX)

**************  Bottom of the 4th inning, Twins batting
 2-0  0 --- 00  Uhlaender grounded out to short (X)
 2-0  1 --- 11  Killebrew grounded out to first (BCX)
 2-0  2 --- 32  Reese walked (BBFSFBB)
 2-0  2 1-- 12  Oliva popped out to short (BCFX)

**************  Top of the 5th inning, Twins batting
 2-0  0 --- 22  Gagne struck out (CBBFS)
 2-0  1 --- 00  Morris popped out to right (X)
 2-0  2 --- 11  Gladden reached on an infield single to third (BCX)
 2-0  2 1-- 01  Knoblauch grounded out to second (FX)

**************  Bottom of the 5th inning, Twins batting
 2-0  0 --- 01  Nettles flied out to right (FX)
 2-0  1 --- 00  Cardenas grounded out to third (X)
 2-0  2 --- 12  Roseboro grounded a single between third and short (FBCX)
 2-0  2 1-- 12  Perry struck out (BCCS)

**************  Top of the 6th inning, Twins batting
 2-0  0 --- 32  Puckett grounded out to third (CSBBBX)
 2-0  1 --- 00  Hrbek grounded a single between third and short (X)
 2-0  1 1-- 00  Harper was hit by a pitch, Hrbek to second (H)
 2-0  1 12- 21  Mack grounded to first, forcing Harper at second, Hrbek
                  to third, Mack to first (BBCX)
 2-0  2 1-3 12  Pagliarulo flied out to right (BCFFX)

**************  Bottom of the 6th inning, Twins batting
 2-0  0 --- 12  Carew tripled deep to right center (BFFX)
 2-0  0 --3 31  Uhlaender hit a sacrifice fly to left, Carew scored
                  (BFBBX)
 2-1  1 --- 11  Killebrew lined a single to right center (BFX)
 2-1  1 1-- 00  Reese grounded a single up the middle, Killebrew to
                  second (1X)
 2-1  1 12- 01  Oliva grounded to short, forcing Reese at second,
                  Killebrew to third, Oliva to first (CX)
 2-1  2 1-3 02  Nettles grounded out to second (CCX)

**************  Top of the 7th inning, Twins batting
 2-1  0 --- 00  Gagne flied out to center (X)
 2-1  1 --- 32  Morris walked (CBSBBB)
 2-1  1 1-- 10  Morris to second, Gladden to first on an error by the
                  third baseman Killebrew (BX)
 2-1  1 12- 12  Knoblauch lined a single up the middle, Morris to third,
                  Gladden to second (FBSFX)
 2-1  1 123 21  Puckett grounded to third, forcing Morris at home,
                  Gladden to third, Knoblauch to second, Puckett to first
                  (CBBX)
 2-1  2 123 12  Hrbek flied out to left (BCFX)

**************  Bottom of the 7th inning, Twins batting
                Manuel pinch hitting for Cardenas
 2-1  0 --- 21  Manuel grounded out to third (CBBX)
 2-1  1 --- 21  Roseboro grounded out to second (BBCX)
 2-1  2 --- 11  Perry grounded out to first (FBX)

**************  Top of the 8th inning, Twins batting
                Renick now playing shortstop
 2-1  0 --- 00  Harper lined a single down the right field line (X)
 2-1  0 1-- 01  Mack homered deep to left, Harper scored (Sb1X)
 4-1  0 --- 32  Pagliarulo walked (BBFSFFBFB)
 4-1  0 1-- 00  Gagne grounded to the mound, forcing Pagliarulo at
                  second, Gagne to first (X)
 4-1  1 1-- 11  Morris flied out to right (CBX)
 4-1  2 1-- 22  Gladden grounded a single up the middle, Gagne to third
                  (BFBFX)
 4-1  2 1-3 30  Knoblauch grounded out to first (BBBX)

**************  Bottom of the 8th inning, Twins batting
 4-1  0 --- 32  Carew reached on an infield single to short (BSBFFFBX)
 4-1  0 1-- 00  Uhlaender flied out to left (X)
 4-1  1 1-- 10  Killebrew grounded into a double play, Gagne to Knoblauch
                  to Hrbek (1BX)

**************  Top of the 9th inning, Twins batting
 4-1  0 --- 01  Puckett grounded out to second (CX)
 4-1  1 --- 11  Hrbek lined out to second (BFX)
 4-1  2 --- 00  Harper popped out to second (X)

**************  Bottom of the 9th inning, Twins batting
 4-1  0 --- 32  Reese walked (CBBFBB)
 4-1  0 1-- 11  Oliva flied out to right (CBX)
 4-1  1 1-- 10  Nettles grounded into a double play, Knoblauch to Gagne
                  to Hrbek (BX)
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