Bold = Player new to Minnesota in 1983
SP Frank Viola 7-15 5.49 ERA 78 ERA+ 1.59 WHIP 5.08 FIP -2.5 PW 4 WS -0.1 WARP3
Viola took his lumps in 1983, but Billy Gardner stuck with him through the entire season. Still, at season’s end, Viola’s spot in the rotation seemed far from safe. “Viola has the ability. At times he looks terrific,” Gardner said, “”But he has been a starter for us for two years, and he has won 11 games. You can give almost anybody 50-60 starts, and he’s going to win 11 games. Viola has to show he can go seven innings, keep us in a ball game, give us a chance to get to Ron Davis and to win. Either that or he is going to have to spend some time learning to pitch in the minors.”
SP Ken Schrom 15-8 3.71 ERA 115 ERA+ 1.41 WHIP 4.23 FIP 1.0 PW 13 WS 3.3 WARP3
Ken Schrom grew up in Idaho, home of Harmon Killebrew, so he was a Twins fan from the beginning. When he got the chance, Schrom signed with the Twins in December of 1982 as a non-roster invitee to spring training. The Twins thought of the former Blue Jay as a potential long reliever, and he didn’t even make the major league team out of camp. As Schrom was pitching in the International League, the Twins’ rotation was falling apart. The call came in early May, and Schrom proved to be the team’s best starter in 1983.
SP Albert Williams 11-14 4.14 ERA 103 ERA+ 1.37 WHIP 4.58 FIP -0.1 PW 10 WS 1.9 WARP3
Alber Williams continued his run of three years as about a league average pitcher. On the Twins, that made him the second best starter in 1983.
SP Bobby Castillo 8-12 4.77 ERA 90 ERA+ 1.48 WHIP 4.26 FIP -0.8 PW 6 WS 1.3 WARP3
Castillo, considered the team’s “ace” starter heading into the season, struggled to find the form that had made him so successful in 1982. He spent much of the season complaining about stiffness in his shoulder, but felt something different after an August 28th game in Baltimore. The diagnosis was a torn rotator cuff. The result meant that essentially Castillo’s career as a pitcher was over. He made a comeback attempt in 1984 and pitched a few innings with the Dodgers but was never quite the same.
SP Brad Havens 5-8 8.18 ERA 53 ERA+ 1.84 WHIP 4.96 FIP -4.0 PW 0 WS -2.2 WARP3
Havens’ futility in 1983 was the main reason that the Twins briefly went to a four-man rotation in the summer. That he got as many innings as he did is a testament to the Twins’ lack of options.
CL Ron Davis 5-8 3.34 ERA 129 ERA+ 1.37 WHIP 2.96 FIP 1.9 PW 12 WS 3.3 WARP3
This was probably Davis’ best season with the Twins. He didn’t quite regain the form that made him a top reliever in New York, but he was definitely a standout performer on a team that lacked them. Like all established players of the Griffith era, Davis was followed with trade rumors throughout the season – the most interesting of which had him going to Detroit for Kirk Gibson.
RP Rick Lysander 5-12 3.38 ERA 127 ERA+ 1.40 WHIP 3.74 FIP 0.9 PW 8 WS 2.0 WARP3
Heading into the season, Gardner expected that the starting rotation would be a relative strength, while the bullpen worried him. As it turned out, the team’s strength was probably in the bullpen. Several players had unexpectedly solid seasons, including Lysander whose previous major league experience consisted of five games with Oakland in 1980.
RP/SP Pete Filson 4-1 3.40 ERA 126 ERA+ 1.29 WHIP 3.97 FIP 0.4 PW 7 WS 1.8 WARP3
Filson was another pleasant surprise for Gardner in 1983. When things were looking particularly down for the starting rotation, Filson filled in and had enough success that he might have been one of the better starting pitchers as well.
RP/SP Jack O’Connor 2-3 5.86 ERA 73 ERA+ 1.72 WHIP 4.74 FIP -0.8 PW 1 WS -0.2 WARP3
RP Len Whitehouse 7-1 4.15 ERA 104 ERA+ 1.55 WHIP 4.49 FIP 0.2 PW 5 WS 1.4 WARP3