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The All-Minnesota-Born All-Time Team

Could the state of Minnesota field its own All-Star team? We had to go back 125 years, but it turns out the answer is yes.

Minnesota All-Star Baseball Team

PITCHER

Charles Albert “Chief” Bender
Born in Crow Wing County

Notable team: Philadelphia Athletics

Career duration: 1903–1925

Rationale: Move over, Jack “Game 7” Morris. With a 22-year career that included one no-hitter, two 20-win seasons, three World Series championships, and 40 total shutouts, Bender gets the nod.

CATCHER

Terry Steinbach
Attended New Ulm High School

Notable team: Oakland A’s

Career duration: 1986–1999

Rationale: We want him behind the plate because of his scrappiness.

FIRST BASE

Kent Hrbek
Attended Bloomington Kennedy High School

Notable team: Minnesota Twins

Career duration: 1981–1994

Rationale: For the brilliant, exaggerated tagging motion he used to remove Ron Gant from first in ’91 alone.

SECOND BASE

Gene DeMontreville
Born in St. Paul

Notable team: Washington Senators

Career duration: 1894–1904

Rationale: He was a .303 career hitter with the 10th longest hitting streak of all time.

SHORTSTOP

Paul Molitor
Attended Cretin-Derham Hall High School

Notable team: Milwaukee Brewers

Career duration: 1978–1998

Rationale: Ignore the fact that he primarily played second and third. We’re exploiting the few games he played at short to have the greatest pure hitter and base stealer the state has ever known.

THIRD BASE

Joe Mauer
Attended Cretin-Derham Hall High School

Notable team: Minnesota Twins

Career duration: 2004–present

Rationale: The catcher-turned-first baseman is athletic enough to field the hot corner in a pinch, which is exactly what we were in with this pick, as Minnesota has never actually produced a top-shelf pure third baseman.

OUTFIELD

Dave Winfield
Attended St. Paul Central High School

Notable team: San Diego Padres

Career duration: 1973–1995

Rationale: Do we really need one for the best all-around athlete Minnesota has ever produced? He was drafted by the NFL, MLB, NBA, and ABA after lettering in three sports at the University of Minnesota.

OUTFIELD

Roger Maris
Born in Hibbing

Notable team: New York Yankees

Career duration: 1957–1968

Rationale: Sure, the guy who raced Yankees battery mate Mickey Mantle to the home run record in 1961 did most of his growing up in North Dakota, but he hails from the land of Dylan.

OUTFIELD

Jim Eisenreich
Born in St. Cloud

Notable team: Kansas City Royals

Career duration: 1982–1998

Rationale: He was a hard-nosed journeyman who managed to post a .290 career average despite being diagnosed with Tourette syndrome in 1984.

CLOSER

Glen Perkins
Attended Stillwater High School

Notable team: Minnesota Twins

Career duration: 2006–present

Rationale: The future best closer the Twins have ever had is a Minnesota lifer.

MANAGER

Tom Kelly
From Graceville

Notable team: Minnesota Twins

Career duration: 1986–2001

Rationale: The greatest manager in club history, responsible for two World Series titles and for building the scrappy team that put the Twins back on the map in 2001.

ASSISTANT MANAGER

Billy Heywood
From the movie Little Big League, set in Minneapolis

Notable team: Minnesota Twins

Career duration: 1994

Rationale: Sure, the 15-year-old Heywood managed fewer than 100 games, was fictional, and didn’t make the playoffs, but he got a standing ovation after his final game and won our hearts anyhow.


IN THE BULLPEN: RELIEF PITCHERS

Jack Morris, Attended Highland Park High School
Notable team: Detroit Tigers, 1977–1994
Stats/achievements: 254-186, 3.90 ERA, 2,478 KO, five-time All-Star, four-time World Series champion, World Series MVP

Jerry Koosman, From Appleton
Notable team: New York Mets, 1967–1985
Stats/achievements: 222-209, 3.36 ERA, 2,556 KO, two-time All-Star, went to the 1969 World Series with the “Miracle Mets”

Josh Johnson, Born in Minneapolis
Notable team: Florida Marlins, 2005–2013
Stats/achievements: 58-45, 3.40 ERA, 915 KO, 1.27 WHIP, two-time All Star, 2010 National League ERA leader


Charles Albert “Chief” Bender, Kent Hrbek and Jim Eisenreich photos from National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum; Terry Steinbach and Tom Kelly Photos by Otto Greule Jr./Getty Images; Paul Molitor Photo by Rich Pilling/MLB Photos via Getty Images; Joe Mauer photo courtesy of Minnesota Twins; Dave Winfield Photo by Louis Requena/MLB Photos; Roger Maris Photo by Hulton Archive/Getty Images; Glen Perkins Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images


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