The Twins Almanac for April 1st


• Birthdate of Ron Perranoski
• Meares Hits Game-Winning Homer
• Five Home Runs on Opening Day
• Carneal Passes Away
• Mauer Ready to Lead Twins to Title
• Berríos Pitches Three-Hit Shutout

April 1, 1936
Birthdate of Ron Perranoski

Ron Perranoski was born in Paterson, New Jersey on this date in 1936. He led the American League in saves in 1969 and ’70 when the Twins won back-to-back AL West Championships. He received MVP votes both seasons, and received Cy Young votes in 1970, the year teammate Jim Perry won the award. 

Perranoski won two World Series rings with the Dodgers, including in 1965 when they beat the Twins in seven games.

The Twins acquired him along with John Roseboro and Bob Miller in a November 1967 trade with the Dodgers in exchange for Jim “Mudcat” Grant and Zoilo Versalles

April 1, 1997
Meares Powers Twins to Opening Day Win

The Twins trailed the Tigers 5-3 heading into the bottom of the eighth on Opening Day before a four-run rally, capped off by a two-out, two-run homer by eight-hitter Pat Meares, driving in Terry Steinbach for the winning run in Steinbach’s Twins debut. 

All nine batters in the starting lineup had at least one hit, with Molitor, Lawton, Steinbach, and Meares connecting for two each. The lineup that day:

  1. Chuck Knoblauch, 2B
  2. Rich Becker, CF
  3. Paul Molitor, DH
  4. Marty Cordova, LF
  5. Matt Lawton, RF
  6. Terry Steinbach, C
  7. Scott Stahoviak, 1B
  8. Pat Meares, SS
  9. Todd Walker, 3B

Brad Radke made the Opening Day start. Three of the four relievers TK used that day were at one time closers for the Twins: Rick Aguilera (who earned the save in this game), “Everyday” Eddie Guardado, and Mike TrombleyDan Naulty also pitched in relief and was credited with the win. 

April 1, 2002
Twins Hit 5 HRs on Opening Day

After a winter during which team owner Carl Pohlad openly talked contraction, Jacque Jones homered on the second pitch of the game on Opening Day in Kansas City. Jones also hit a three-run go-ahead homer in the seventh, powering the Twins to an 8-6 win.

David OrtizBrian Buchanan, and Torii Hunter each hit solo homers for a total of five, tying the American League Opening Day record.

The Twins are the most recent of five AL teams to hit five homers on Opening Day. The Mets set the major league Opening Day record with six against the Expos in 1988. The MLB record for home runs in any game is 10, by the Blue Jays against the Orioles in 1987.

April 1, 2007
Carneal Passes Away

Legendary Twins radio broadcaster Herb Carneal passed away on this date in 2007, at age 83. He spent FORTY-FOUR years calling Twins games, originally joining Ray Scott and Halsey Hall in 1962—the Twins’ second season in Minnesota. He received the Hall of Fame’s Ford C. Frick Award in 1996. He and Jim Kaat comprised the sophomore class of the Twins Hall of Fame, inducted on July 7, 2001.

On a personal note, when I was in elementary school, I won a drawing at Hardee’s (true story) and got to spend an inning in the booth with Herb Carneal and John Gordon.

April 1, 2010

Joe Mauer appeared on the cover of Sports Illustrated Kids on this date in 2010. Take a close look at that cover: “Joe Mauer is ready to lead the Minnesota Twins to the World Series.” Uff da . . .

I mean, I guess it was April Fools’ Day 🙂

April 1, 2018
Berríos Gets Off to Hot Start

José Berríos got off to a heckuva start in 2018, pitching a complete-game three-hit shutout in his first start of the season for a 7-0 Twins win in Baltimore. 

The Twins had the lead from the very first pitch, as Brian Dozier hit his team record 28th and final leadoff home run. (Jacque Jones has the second-most leadoff home runs in team history with 20.)

In 2019, Berríos was the Twins Opening Day starter. He responded by pitching the first 7.2 innings of the Twins’ first Opening Day shutout in 49 years (Jim Perry, 1970). Taylor Rogers earned the four-out save, striking out three.  



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