VOTE: Most Iconic Twins Moment
Earlier this week, The Sporting News released their list of the most iconic moment for each MLB team. Certain teams are tied to some of the best moments in the history of the sport while other teams' top moments aren't very memorable outside of their home market. That's the nature of these kinds of lists.
This article was originally published in blog:
VOTE: Most Iconic Twins Moment
For Twins fans, it is pretty easy to put Kirby Puckett's walk-off home run in Game 6 of the 1991 World Series at the top of the list. The '91 World Series might be the best Fall Classic of all time and this was a signature moment that elevated it above the rest of Twins history.
There have been other significant moments throughout the history of the franchise. This got me thinking about what other events would end up on the Twins most iconic list. I polled the Twitter universe to see what other ideas people could come up with; there have been plenty of other signature moments in the team's history.
How would you rank the following moments in relation to how iconic they were for the Twins? The following are listed in chronological order, starting with the most recent. Click on each link for a video or clip about the moment.
Alexi Casilla's Walk-Off Hit, Game 163 (2009): For the younger generation of Twins fans, this is the closest thing to a walk-off World Series moment. It also helps that the game was back and forth with both teams seemingly near a victory. The Twins got to swarm onto the field and celebrate in front of a packed house and it was a great way to say goodbye to the Metrodome in the Twins final season there.
Gene Larkin's Walk-Off Hit, Game 7 (1991): This game belonged to Jack Morris but it's hard to call one entire pitching performance an iconic moment. Larkin's hit over the outfielders' heads allowed Dan Gladden to trot home and the Twins to be World Series champions for the second time in five seasons. Morris was one of the first to meet Gladden at home plate and the legacy of this World Series was cemented in time.
Kirby Puckett's Catch, Game 6 (1991): Before his walk-off heroics later in the evening, Puckett made a defensive play for the ages. His leap up against the Plexiglass outfield wall might have been the highlight of the game if not for his "See You Tomorrow Night" home run. The smaller sized Puckett seemed to defy gravity with his leap to pull in a sure bet extra-base hit.
Kent Hrbek tags Ron Gant, Game 2 (1991): For Braves fans, this moment still burns deep in their souls. It is another story for Twins fans as this moment could have been one of the early turning points in the series. Hrbek might have muscled Gant off the base but the umpires still called him out. In recent years, this moment was immortalized in bobblehead form and it doesn't get much more iconic than that.
Kent Hrbek's Grand Slam, Game 6 (1987): While the 1991 World Series was full of iconic moments, it is tough to find an iconic moment from the Twins first championship run. Hrbek's grand slam in Game 6 helped Minnesota push the Cardinals to a decisive Game 7. This would lead to Hrbek's leap at first base after collecting the final out of the team's first championship. Both these moments were iconic but the home run was more important to the outcome of the series.
Metrodome's ALCS Celebration (1987): The front office for the Twins wasn't expecting more than a few thousand fans to welcome the Twins home after clinching the team's first AL pennant since 1965. By the end of the evening the Metrodome was packed to the brim with fans even having to sit in the stairs to get a view of the team. Members of the 1987 team always talk about this moment and for them it might be the most iconic.
Harmon Killebrew's 520 foot HR (1967): A seat still hangs on the wall at the Mall of America to commemorate this Ruthian blast off the bat of Killebrew. As the first face of the franchise, Killebrew never had a championship winning moment. His 1965 team made the World Series but fell short against the Dodgers. Of all of his moments in a Twins uniform, this might be the one that stands the test of time.
Bob Allison's Catch, Game 2 (1965): In only their fifth season since moving to Minnesota, the Twins were in the World Series. Minnesota won the first two games at The Met and Allison's catch helped to keep Game 2 close. His slow dive down the left field line took away what was sure to be an extra base hit. Los Angeles scored only one run in the game and this was one of the first iconic moments in the club's history.