2004: Over 80 years of experience

Wednesday September 1, 2004

From LEN3’s story in the Star Tribune:

As Twins lefthander Terry Mulholland warmed up before Wednesday’s 4-2 victory over Texas, The Spinners’ “Rubber Band Man” blared over the Dome’s speakers, recognizing Mulholland’s long and durable pitching career.

Pat Borders, the well-traveled catcher, was on the other end of his warmup tosses.

It was the oldest starting battery in the major leagues in almost 60 years.

“You’re sitting there and thinking, `I’ve got a 41-year-old pitcher and a 41-year-old catcher,’ ” Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said, “and you’re running them out there against the Texas Rangers, who are a pretty good baseball team. You go, `Wow, this is entertainment,’ and it is.”

Despite his experience, it was actually Borders’ first game as a Twin:

Gardenhire didn’t wait to start Borders, who arrived Wednesday in a minor league trade with Seattle. That was because Henry Blanco caught all 11 innings on Tuesday, and Borders and Mulholland spent spring training together while with Seattle.

That made Mulholland, 41, and Borders, 41, the oldest starting pitcher-catcher battery since June 3, 1945, when Curt Davis and Clyde Sukeforth hooked up for the Brooklyn Dodgers.

“That was because all the young guys were out fighting the war,” Mulholland quipped.

Mulholland threw 102 pitches over six innings, but he avoided any big innings and held a good lineup to two runs over six innings on seven hits and one walk.

“After we got beyond the fact that we were the oldest battery in all of baseball,” he said. “We just had fun.”

In an interesting twist, it was 25-year-old rookie Terry Tiffee who knocked in the go-ahead run with a two-run double in the bottom of the eighth inning.



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