When the Minnesota Twins open the 2012 season in Baltimore on Friday, April 6 it will mark the 32nd time in 52 season openers that the team has opened their baseball season as road warriors. As a cold weather team, the Twins have only played the seasons first game at Met Stadium five times (63,65,66,71,81) and fifteen times at the Metrodome. In their short history at Target Field the Twins have never opened the season at home. The Twins have not charged out of the gate on a winning note over the years winning only won 24 and losing 27 season opening games. You can make a strong case that their first ever game as Minnesota Twins on April 11, 1961 in Yankee Stadium when Pedro Ramos shut out the New Yorks Yankees 6-0 on just 3 hits was their greatest season opener ever. The most frequest opening day opponent for the Twins has been the Oakland A’s. The Twins have played the Oakland A’s on opening day ten times (the last time in 1990), eight times in Oakland and twice at home (at the Met in 1981 and at the Metrodome in 1987) and the opening day series between these two teams is tied at five game each. The Twins have drawn the Seattle Mariners as opening day opponents four times, twice at home and twice on the road and the Twins have yet to beat the Mariners on opening day.
Pitcher Brad Radke has taken the mound for the Twins on opening day nine times including seven in a row between 1999 and 2005. Radke’s record on opening day was 4 wins, 2 losses, and 3 no decisions. Kent Hrbek has started 12 games at 1B on opening day, the most games that any Twins player has played at any position on opening day. A number of players have started opening day at their position nine times but Hrbek is still the leader in that category.
The Twins have opened the season in Baltimore only once before and that was back on April 11, 1967 in Memorial Stadium when Jim Kaat took the mound for the Twins but before he retired a single batter, the Orioles plated four runs and held on for a 6-3 win. The Twins only other season opener against the Baltimore Orioles occurred on April 2, 2007 at the Metrodome when the Twins behind starter Johan Sanatana and home runs from Torii Hunter and Justin Morneau won 7-4.
Here is who the Twins have faced and how they have fared on opening day.