2002 Minnesota Twins season

The 2002 Minnesota Twins season was the 42nd season for the Minnesota Twins franchise in the Twin Cities of Minnesota, their 21st season at the Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome and the 102nd overall in the American League. After nearly folding as part of the 2001 Major League Baseball contraction plan, and coming out of a second-place finish in the AL Central with a pitching staff with only two players with an ERA under 4.00, they still won their division and made it to the 2002 American League Championship Series (ALCS) with the youngest team in the league, and with a new manager, Ron Gardenhire. The Twins had a solid first half of the season (45–36), but had a better second half (49–31), which led them to being the division champions. This was the Twins' last season with David Ortiz, as he left the Twins for the Red Sox after the 2002 season.

2002 Minnesota Twins
American League Central champions
Major League affiliations
Record94–67 (.584).
Divisional place1st
Other information
Owner(s)Carl Pohlad
General manager(s)Terry Ryan
Manager(s)Ron Gardenhire
Local televisionKSTC-TV
Fox Sports North
(Bert Blyleven, Dick Bremer)
Local radio830 WCCO AM
(Herb Carneal, John Gordon, Dan Gladden)
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New Alternate Logos

For the 2002 season, the Twins adopted a secondary logo based on those used from 1970 to 1986, with twins (one representing Minneapolis and the other St. Paul) shaking hands while standing by the river which separates the two cities. The logo also features the team's primary logo, replacing the "Win Twins!" baseball used in the 1976–1986 version.

The season also marked the revival of the "TC" cap logo, which had last been used as such in 1986.


  • November 7, 2001: David Lamb was signed by the Twins as a free agent.[1]
  • January 23, 2002: Mike Jackson was signed by the Twins as a free agent.[2]

Regular season

  • May 6: The 2002 NCAA National women's hockey champion Minnesota Duluth Bulldogs were recognized by the Minnesota Twins baseball team at the Metrodome in Minneapolis.[3]
  • June 4: The Twins walloped the hapless Cleveland Indians 23-2, setting a club record for their largest winning margin and tying their record for most RBI with 22. Pitcher Rick Reed was lifted after seven innings with a 21-run lead. In the game, Luis Rivas scored five times, joining three other Twins who have accomplished that mark before: Rod Carew (1977), Tim Teufel (1983) and Paul Molitor (1996).[4]
  • The representatives of the Twins in the All-Star Game were closer Eddie Guardado, center fielder Torii Hunter, and catcher A. J. Pierzynski.
  • October 9: A home attendance record was set when 55,990 watched the Twins lose to the Anaheim Angels in the second game of the American League Championship Series.[5]
  • The Twins made just 74 errors this season, their best-ever showing in the field. The worst season was the inaugural campaign of 1961, when they committed 174 errors.
  • Jacque Jones had 11 lead-off home runs this season, the second-best season total in American League history, trailing just Brady Anderson's 12 in 1996.[6]
  • The highest paid Twin in 2002 was Brad Radke at $8,750,000; followed by Rick Reed at $7,000,000.
  • October 28: Pitcher Michael Jackson was granted free agency, and would later sign with the Arizona Diamondbacks. This season he wore number '42', being grandfathered in after Major League Baseball retired the number league-wide in 1997 to honor pioneer Jackie Robinson. Players wearing the number at that time were allowed to continue. Jackson was the last Minnesota Twin to wear the number '42'.
  • Bert Blyleven and Tom Kelly were inducted into the Twins Hall of Fame.


No player hit 30 home runs or drove in 100 RBIs, but many players enjoyed solid seasons. Torii Hunter and Jacque Jones hit 29 and 27 home runs, respectively, while designated hitter David Ortiz battled injuries and hit 20. Catcher A. J. Pierzynski had a good year for a catcher, hitting .300. First baseman Doug Mientkiewicz saw his average drop significantly from the prior year, from .306 to .261. Third baseman Corey Koskie had a subpar year offensively, shortstop Cristian Guzmán was average, and second baseman Luis Rivas was not strong. The Twins enjoyed solid production out of the right field spot, whether the position was manned by opening day starter Brian Buchanan, Dustan Mohr, Bobby Kielty, or Michael Cuddyer.

Team Leaders
HRTorii Hunter29
RBITorii Hunter94
BAJacque Jones.300
RunsJacque Jones96


The starting rotation resembled a tubercular ward. Brad Radke, Eric Milton, and Joe Mays suffered serious injuries, requiring Rick Reed to carry the starting rotation. He was able to fulfill this role, going 9-2 in the second half. For inexplicable reasons, manager Ron Gardenhire resisted putting Johan Santana into the starter role until he was forced to by injuries. Santana started only 14 games, but quickly established himself as a dominant starting pitcher, posting an 8-6 record, 2.99 ERA, and a team-leading 137 strikeouts. Kyle Lohse enjoyed his only solid year as a starter, going 13-8 with a 4.23 ERA. Matt Kinney also made 12 starts. Eddie Guardado excelled in his first full year as the team's closer, earning 45 saves, while J. C. Romero, LaTroy Hawkins, and Mike Jackson had strong years as set-up men. Tony Fiore had a bafflingly strong year out of the bullpen, going 10-3 with an ERA of 3.16.

Team Leaders
ERARick Reed3.78
WinsRick Reed15
SavesEddie Guardado45
StrikeoutsJohan Santana137


A. J. Pierzynski was the team's all-star starting catcher, backed up by Tom Prince. Doug Mientkiewicz followed up his Gold Glove year with another superb year defensively. Unfortunately, his relatively weak hitting in 2002 may have prevented him from winning a second consecutive Gold Glove award, as it went to John Olerud. The rest of the infield was defensively solid, with Luis Rivas at second, Cristian Guzmán at short, and Corey Koskie at third. In the outfield, two-thirds of the "Soul Patrol" remained, with Jacque Jones in left and Torii Hunter in center. (This would be Hunter's second consecutive Gold Glove year.) Right field was a question mark, with Brian Buchanan not lasting long after being the opening day right fielder. The void was filled for most of the season by the platoon of Dustan Mohr and Bobby Kielty, known collectively by fans as "Dusty Kielmohr". However, Dusty Kielmohr gave way to Michael Cuddyer for the post-season run.

Season standings

AL Central W L Pct. GB Home Road
Minnesota Twins 9467 0.584 54–27 40–40
Chicago White Sox 8181 0.500 13½ 47–34 34–47
Cleveland Indians 7488 0.457 20½ 39–42 35–46
Kansas City Royals 62100 0.383 32½ 37–44 25–56
Detroit Tigers 55106 0.342 39 33–47 22–59

American League Wild Card

Division leaders W L Pct.
New York Yankees 10358 0.640
Minnesota Twins 9467 0.584
Oakland Athletics 10359 0.636

Wild Card team
(Top team qualifies for postseason)
W L Pct. GB
Anaheim Angels 9963 0.611
Boston Red Sox 9369 0.574 6
Seattle Mariners 9369 0.574 6
Chicago White Sox 8181 0.500 18
Toronto Blue Jays 7884 0.481 21
Cleveland Indians 7488 0.457 25
Texas Rangers 7290 0.444 27
Baltimore Orioles 6795 0.414 32
Kansas City Royals 62100 0.383 37
Detroit Tigers 55106 0.342 43½
Tampa Bay Devil Rays 55106 0.342 43½

Record vs. opponents

Anaheim 7–23–46–36–38–16–34–53–49–119–108–112–77–211–7
Baltimore 2–76–133–41–52–47–05–16–134–55–410–93–64–159–9
Boston 4–313–62–45–45–44–23–39–106–34–516–34–313–65–13
Chicago 3–64–34–29–1012–711–88–112–42–75–44–35–44–28–10
Cleveland 3–65–14–510–910–99–108–113–62–53–44–24–53–36–12
Detroit 1–84–24–57–129–109–104–141–81–62–52–45–40–66–12
Kansas City 3–60–72–48–1110–910–95–141–51–83–64–27–23–45–13
Minnesota 5–41–53–311–811–814–414–50–63–65–45–26–36–110–8
New York 4–313–610–94–26–38–15–16–05–44–513–54–310–911–7
Oakland 11–95–43–67–25–26–18–16–34–58–118–113–63–616–2
Seattle 10–94–55–44–54–35–26–34–55–411–85–413–76–311–7
Tampa Bay 1–89–103–163–42–44–22–42–55–131–84–54–58–117–11
Texas 7–126–33–44–55–44–52–73–63–46–137–135–48–19–9
Toronto 2–715–46–132–43–36–04–31–69–106–33–611–81–89–9

Notable transactions


2002 Minnesota Twins
Pitchers Catchers


Outfielders Manager


Player stats

Starters by position

Note: Pos = Position; G = Games played; AB = At bats; H = Hits; Avg. = Batting average; HR = Home runs; RBI = Runs batted in

Pos Player G AB H Avg. HR RBI
CA. J. Pierzynski130440132.300649
1BDoug Mientkiewicz143467122.2611064
2BLuis Rivas9331681.256435
SSCristian Guzmán148623170.273959
3BCorey Koskie140490131.2671569
LFJacque Jones149577173.3002785
CFTorii Hunter148561162.2892994
RFDustan Mohr120383103.2691245
DHDavid Ortiz125412112.2722075

Other batters

Note: G = Games played; AB = At bats; H = Hits; Avg. = Batting average; HR = Home runs; RBI = Runs batted in

Player G AB H Avg. HR RBI
Bobby Kielty11228984.2911246
Denny Hocking10226065.250225
Matt LeCroy6318147.260727
Brian Buchanan4413534.252515
Tom Prince5112528.224416
Jay Canizaro3811224.214011
Michael Cuddyer4111229.259413
Casey Blake9204.20001
Michael Restovich8134.30811
Todd Sears7124.33300
Michael Ryan7111.09100
David Lamb7101.10000
Warren Morris470.00000
Javier Valentín442.50000

Starting pitchers

Note: G = Games pitched; IP = Innings pitched; W = Wins; L = Losses; ERA = Earned run average; SO = Strikeouts

Player G IP W L ERA SO
Rick Reed33188.01573.78121
Kyle Lohse32180.21384.23124
Eric Milton29171.01394.84121
Brad Radke21118.1954.7262
Joe Mays1795.1485.3838
Matt Kinney1466.0274.6445

Other pitchers

Note: G = Games pitched; IP = Innings pitched; W = Wins; L = Losses; ERA = Earned run average; SO = Strikeouts

Player G IP W L ERA SO
Johan Santana27108.1862.99137
Juan Rincón1028.2026.2821

Relief pitchers

Note: G = Games pitched; W = Wins; L = Losses; SV = Saves; ERA = Earned run average; SO = Strikeouts

Player G W L SV ERA SO
Eddie Guardado6813452.9370
J. C. Romero819211.8976
LaTroy Hawkins656002.1363
Mike Jackson582303.2729
Tony Fiore4810303.1655
Bob Wells482105.9030
Jack Cressend230105.9122
Kevin Frederick800010.035
Mike Trombley501015.753
Travis Miller50004.503
José Rodríguez401014.731

Post Season

The Twins made it to the ALCS, beating the Oakland Athletics in the Divisional series. They then lost to the eventual World Series Champions, the Anaheim Angels.

Divisional Series

The Twins won Game One at Oakland before losing two straight including one at home. The Twins rebounded, and won the final two games to win the series and move on to face Anaheim in the ALCS.

Game One

October 1, at Oakland

Team 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Minnesota 012 003 100 7133
Oakland 320 000 000 5120
W: Brad Radke (1-0)  L: Ted Lilly (0-1)  SV: Eddie Guardado (1)  
HRs: MIN Corey Koskie (1), Doug Mientkiewicz (1)

Game Two

October 2, at Oakland

Team 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Minnesota 000 001 000 170
Oakland 300 510 000 9140
W: Mark Mulder (1-0)  L: Joe Mays (0-1)  
HRs: OAK Eric Chavez (1),MIN Cristian Guzmán (1)

Game Three

October 4, at Minnesota

Team 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Oakland 200 101 200 691
Minnesota 000 12 0000 380
W: Barry Zito (1-0)  L: Rick Reed (0-1)  
HRs: OAK Ray Durham (1), Scott Hatteberg (1), Terrence Long (1), Jermaine Dye, (1)

Game Four

October 5, at Minnesota

Team 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Oakland 002 000 000 272
Minnesota 002 700 20X 11120
W: Eric Milton (1-0)  L: Tim Hudson (0-1)  
HRs: OAK Miguel Tejada (1),MIN Doug Mientkiewicz (2)

Game Five

October 6, at Oakland

Team 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Minnesota 011 000 003 5120
Oakland 001 000 003 4110
W: Brad Radke (2-0)  L: Mark Mulder (1-1)  
HRs: OAK Ray Durham (2), Mark Ellis (1) MIN A. J. Pierzynski (1)


The Twins won the first game at home vs. the Angels, before losing the next four in a row, allowing the Angels to move on to the World Series, who won the Series in seven games against the San Francisco Giants.

Game One

October 8, at Minnesota

Team 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Anaheim 001 000 000 140
Minnesota 010 010 00X 251
W: Joe Mays (1-0)  L: Kevin Appier (0-1)  SV: Eddie Guardado (1)
HRs: None

Game Two

October 9, at Minnesota

Team 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Anaheim 130 002 000 6100
Minnesota 000 003 000 3111
W: Ramón Ortiz (1-0)  L: Rick Reed (0-1)  SV: Troy Percival (1)
HRs: ANA Darin Erstad (1), Brad Fullmer (1)

Game Three

October 11, at Anaheim

Team 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Minnesota 000 000 100 160
Anaheim 010 000 01X 272
W: Francisco Rodríguez (1-0)  L: J. C. Romero (0-1)  SV: Troy Percival (2)
HRs: ANA Garret Anderson (1), Troy Glaus (1)

Game Four

October 12, at Anaheim

Team 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Minnesota 000 000 001 162
Anaheim 000 000 25X 7100
W: John Lackey (1-0)  L: Brad Radke (0-1)  
HRs: None

Game Five

October 13, at Anaheim

Team 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Minnesota 110 000 300 590
Anaheim 001 020 100X 13180
W: Francisco Rodríguez (2-0)  L: Johan Santana (0-1)  
HRs: ANA Adam Kennedy (3), Scott Spiezio (1)
  • October 14: Released Casey Blake.
  • October 17: Pitcher Jack Cressend selected off waivers by the Cleveland Indians.
  • November 15: Traded pitcher Matt Kinney and catcher Javier Valentín to the Milwaukee Brewers for minor leaguers Gerry Oakes and Matt Yeatman.
  • November 22: Signed pitcher Carlos Pulido as a free agent. Pulido had last played in the majors in 1994 (also for the Twins).
  • December 16, 2002: Released DH David Ortiz.[11]

Other post-season awards

Farm system

Level Team League Manager
AAA Edmonton Trappers Pacific Coast League John Russell
AA New Britain Rock Cats Eastern League Stan Cliburn
A Fort Myers Miracle Florida State League Jose Marzan
A Quad Cities River Bandits Midwest League Jeff Carter
Rookie Elizabethton Twins Appalachian League Ray Smith
Rookie GCL Twins Gulf Coast League Rudy Hernández

LEAGUE CHAMPIONS: Edmonton[12][13]



  1. David Lamb at Baseball Reference
  2. Mike Jackson at Baseball Reference
  3. "UMD Bulldogs - View Memorable Moments". www.umdbulldogs.com. Archived from the original on July 25, 2011. Retrieved January 14, 2022.
  4. "Twins 23, Indians 2". Baseball-Reference.com. Retrieved February 9, 2016.
  5. "2002 ALCS Game 2". Baseball-Reference.com. Retrieved February 9, 2016.
  6. "Home Run Records". Baseball-Almanac.com. Retrieved February 9, 2016.
  7. Mike Trombley at Baseball Reference
  8. Jesse Crain at Baseball Reference
  9. José Rodríguez at Baseball Reference
  10. Brian Buchanan at Baseball Reference
  11. David Ortiz Statistics Baseball-Reference.com
  12. Johnson, Lloyd, and Wolff, Miles, ed., The Encyclopedia of Minor League Baseball, 3rd edition. Durham, North Carolina: Baseball America, 2007
  13. Baseball America 2003 Annual Directory
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