This Day in Twins History – January 16, 2001

In their first year of eligibility,  Kirby Puckett and Dave Winfield are elected to the MLB Hall of Fame. The former Twins are the fourth pair of teammates selected by BBWAA in the same year.

Kirby Puckett who spent his entire career as a Minnesota Twin was a Twins icon from the day he was called up in 1984 until he lost sight in his right eye and had to leave baseball after the 1995 season at the age of 36. Puckett, a fan favorite where ever he went led the Minnesota Twins to World Series championships in 1987 and 1991 and was an All-Star for 10 consecutive years. Kirby Puckett suffered a massive stroke and died on March 6, 2006.

Dave Winfield

Dave Winfield is a Minnesota native and attended the University of Minnesota where he was a star in both baseball and basketball. In 1973, he was named All-American and voted MVP of the College World Series as a pitcher. After his college eligibility was concluded, Winfield was drafted by four teams in three different sports. The San Diego Padres selected him as a pitcher with the fourth overall pick in the MLB draft and both the Atlanta Hawks (NBA) and the Utah Stars (ABA) drafted him and though he never played college football, the Minnesota Vikings selected Winfield in the 17th round of the NFL draft. Winfield signed with the San Diego Padres and the Padres immediately put Winfield in right field and Winfield was on his way to a Hall of Fame career with not a single day of minor league baseball on his resume. Winfield’s 22 year career also included stops with the Yankees, Angels, Blue Jays, Twins, and the Cleveland Indians. Winfield had 3,110 career hits with hit number 3,000 coming at the Metrodome in a Twins uniform.

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