Friday, March 18, 2011

Ultimate Twins Team Bracket: 2002 vs. 1969

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The 1991 Twins survived their first round match-up yesterday with the 2006 Twins. Today's first round match-up pits the #2 2002 Twins vs. the #3 1969 Twins. There were a variety of upsets yesterday in the first round of the NCAA Tournament. Could today be the first upset in the Ultimate Twins Team Bracket?

2002 Twins Batting/Positions (By Games Played)
C AJ Pierzynski (.300 BA, 6 HR, 49 RBI, .773 OPS)
1B Doug Mientkiewicz (.261 BA, 10 HR, 64 RBI, .756 OPS)
2B Luis Rivas (.256 BA, 4 HR, 35 RBI, .697 OPS)
SS Cristian Guzman (.273 BA, 9 HR, 59 RBI, .677 OPS)
3B Corey Koskie (.267 BA, 15 RBI, 69 RBI, .815 OPS)
LF Jacque Jones (.300 BA, 27 HR, 85 RBI, .852 OPS)
CF Torii Hunter (.334 BA, 29 HR, 94 RBI, .859 OPS)
RF Dustan Mohr (.269 BA, 12 HR, 45 RBI, .759 OPS)
DH David Ortiz (.272 BA, 20 HR, 75 RBI, .839 OPS)

1969 Twins Batting/Positions (By Games Played)
C John Roseboro (.263 BA, 3 HR, 32 RBI, .654 OPS)
1B Rich Reese (.322 BA, 16 HR, 69 RBI, .875 OPS)
2B Rod Carew (.332 BA, 8 HR, 56 RBI, .853 OPS)
SS Leo Cardenas (.280 BA, 10 HR, 70 RBI, .741 OPS)
3B Harmon Killebrew (.276 BA, 49 HR, 140 RBI, 1.011 OPS)
LF Bob Allison (.228 BA, 8 HR, 27 RBI, .751 OPS)
CF Ted Uhlaender (.273 BA, 8 HR, 62 RBI, .684 OPS)
RF Tony Oliva (.309 BA, 24 HR, 101 RBI, .851 OPS)
DH* Cesar Tovar (.288 BA, 11 HR, 52 RBI, .757 OPS)
(*No DH in 1969)

Best of 5 Series
Game 1 Match-Up: Brad Radke vs. Jim Perry
The 2002 Twins surprised the world of baseball by upsetting the powerhouse Oakland Athletics. The 1969 Twins had a great regular season but met up with the powerhouse Baltimore Orioles. Radke vs. Perry provides a unique opening game face-off. Both pitchers started off hot but Radke ran into trouble in the middle innings. The middle of the '69 batting order had too much pop. Killebrew and Oiva provided all of the offense for the '69 Twins as they get their first postseason win.
1969 Twins 5
2002 Twins 1 ('69 Twins Lead Series 1-0)

Game 2 Match-Up: Joe Mays vs. Dave Boswell
This back and forth game saw the offense of the 2002 Twins make their biggest appearance in the series. They exploded out of the gate and chased Boswell from the game. Hunter, Jones, and Ortiz all hit homeruns in the early innings of the game. The '69 team tried to fight their way back in the 9th but "Everyday" Eddie Guardado came away with the save.
2002 Twins 9
1969 Twins 7 (Series Tied 1-1)

Game 3 Match-Up: Rick Reed vs. Jim Kaat
This pivotal game has one inning that sticks out to lead the 2002 Twins to the win. Luis Rivas led off the 6th inning and was able to coax a walk from Kaat. Jacque Jones was next at the plate and struck-out swinging for the first out of the inning. Cristian Guzman executed a perfect hit and run to advance Rivas from 1st to 3rd. A double from Koskie and an sac-fly from Ortiz added the two runs that would be the difference in this game.
2002 Twins 4
1969 Twins 2 ('02 Twins Lead Series 2-1)

Game 4 Match-Up: Eric Milton vs. Jim Perry
On the brink of elimination the '69 team turns back to their Game 1 starter, Jim Perry. Their only win in the series had come with Perry on the mound and Billy Martin was hoping for more of Perry's magic on the mound. Martin's intuition was correct and Perry pitched a gem. The '69 Twins sent the series to a decisive 5th game.
1969 Twins 6
2002 Twins 3 (Series Tied 2-2)

Game 5 Match-Up: Brad Radke vs. Dave Boswell
The 2002 Twins have been here before and rode the back of Radke to a Game 5 win against the Athletics. The 1969 Twins are trying to get the playoff monkey off of their back to win a series. The '69 Twins get a 3-run shot from Killebrew in the 3rd to put them on top. The 2002 Twins claw their way back to tie the game in the late innings. The '69 Twins are able to score 2 runs in the top of the 12 inning. Ron Perranoski gave one of the runs back in the bottom of the inning but was able to get out of a bases loaded jam to clinch the series.
1969 Twins 5
2002 Twins 4 ('69 Twins Win Series 3-2) 
12 Innings

There are still two more exciting first round match-ups left in the Eastern Bracket. Who will join the 1991 Twins and the 1969 Twins in the Final Four?

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