Friday, November 11, 2011

Top 11 to wear #11 for the Twins

Today's date is one of those weird dates that only comes along once in a lifetime. It is the eleventh day of the eleventh month of the eleventh year of the 2000's or in other terms, the date is 11-11-11. Many veterans will be honored today since it is also Veteran's Day across the United States. But for the purpose of this post, I tried to find the top 11 players who wore the number 11 for the Minnesota Twins. There are some very recognizable names and some other not so recognizable faces. Overall, they are all connected by the number 11.

Some of these players wore more than one number during their time with the Twins. These rankings are strictly based on their time with the number 11 on their backs.

11. Al Woods (wore #11 in 1986)
rWAR 0.2, .321/.375/.571, 2 HR, 8 RBI
Woods was originally drafted by the Twins in 1972 but he would not appear in a game for the club until 1986. Most of his career was spent in the Blue Jays organization but his 23 games with the Twins were enough to squeeze him on the end of this list.

10. Sal Butera (wore #11 from 1980-1982)
rWAR 0.4, .251/.327/.283, 0 HR, 28 RBI
Sal, the father of Drew Butera, had two stints with the Twins during his career. He only wore the number 11 in his first trip through the bigs with the Twins. If Drew could get on base as much as his father, the Twins might not be in the market for a back up catcher.

9. George Banks (wore #11 from 1962-1964)
rWAR 0.5, .211/.327/.377, 7 HR, 23 RBI
Banks is not the title character of the same name from the Father of the Bride movies. He was primarily used as a pinch hitter during the course of his career and he struggled to find consistent playing time at a defensive position. The 1962 season was his best with the number 11 on his jersey.

8. Bernie Allen (wore #11 in 1966)
rWAR 0.4, .238/.299/.348, 5 HR, 30 RBI
Allen actually wore five different numbers during his time in the Twins organization. The 1966 season was the only one in which he donned the number 11 and it would be his last season with the Twins. The number did not help his offensive output but his defense at second base was good.

7. Brant Alyea (wore #11 from 1970-1971)
rWAR 0.8, .248/.333/.421, 18 HR, 76 RBI
Alyea's two seasons with the Twins were in stark contrast of one another. In 1970, Alyea was a solid producer in the a playoff bound line-up for the Twins. He had 16 home runs and 61 RBI while hitting a solid .291 in 290 plate appearances. The next season was a nightmare as his average dropped to .177 and  he only mustered two home runs.

6. Ben Revere (wore #11 in 2011)
rWAR 0.8, .267/.310/.619, 0 HR, 30 RBI
The speedy Revere got a lot of time in 2011 because of various injuries in the Twins line-up. He made good use of that time and set the franchise rookie record for steals in a season. The high batting average he produced in the minors didn't carry over to the big leagues. His highlight reel catches were something for fans to watch in an otherwise abysmal season.

5. Ted Uhlaender (wore #11 from 1967-1969)
rWAR 2.4, .272/.315/.374, 21 HR, 163 RBI
The Twins signed Uhlaender as an amateur free agent during their first season in Minnesota. The number 11 was not the only number he wore with the Twins but he put up his best three seasons while wearing the number. He also has the third highest RBI total for anyone who wore the number 11 for the Twins.

4. Steve Brye (wore #11 from 1972-1976)
rWAR 3.2, .264/.314/.363, 19 HR, 143 RBI
The right-handed outfielder for the Twins was able to put up some decent numbers during his career with the club. The organization had used a first round pick on Brye in 1967 but he would never fully develop into any kind of star. His best seasons were when he wore number 11 but his numbers were not off the charts.

3. Tim Teufel (wore #11 from 1984-1985)
rWAR 4.1, .261/.343/.399, 24 HR, 111 RBI
The early 1980's were not exactly the peak seasons for the Twins and Tuefel was part of many of those squads. He showed some slight power in the early years of the Metrodome but the Twins passed him on to the Mets before the 1986 season. He and Pat Crosby were sent to New York for Billy Beane, Joe Klink, and Bill Latham.

2. Jacque Jones (wore #11 from 1999-2005)
rWAR 9.2, .279/.327/.455, 132 HR, 476 RBI
One of the core members of the revival of Twins baseball in the early 2000's, Jones helped to bring the Twins back from the verge of contraction. He and Torii Hunter manned the outfield of the Metrodome and formed part of the "Soul Patrol." His best season was in 2002 when he batted .300 with 27 home runs and 85 RBI. I still have a jersey shirt with his name and the number 11 on it.

1. Chuck Knoblach (wore #11 from 1991-1997)
rWAR 35.4, .304/.391/.416, 43 HR, 391 RBI
His rookie season in 1991 helped the Twins to win their second World Series title in five seasons. One of his most memorable plays might be the fake double play in Game 7 of that epic series. He would be a fixture on the Twins during the 1990's and he would represent the team in four All-Star games while winning two Silver Sluggers and a Gold Glove.

BONUS: The Worst Twins Player to Wear #11
Tom Nieto (wore #11 from 1987-1988)
rWAR -1.4, .152/.213/.224, 1 HR, 12 RBI


Maija said...

Jaqcue will always be #11 for me.

NoDak Twins Fan said...

I still have a jersey-shirt with Jones and #11