This Day in Twins History – May 22, 1981

Third base coach Billy Gardner, 53, replaces the fired John Goryl as manager of the Minnesota Twins. Minnesota (11-25) had lost 8 consecutive games and 13 out of its last 15 games. Gardner will go on to manage the Twins until June of 1985 and compiles a 268-353 record and his best finish is in 1984 when the team plays 81-81 ball and finishes in third place. During his stay with the Twins, he was widely credited for helping the development of the group of young players that would form the core of the World Series-winning team of 1987, players such as Kent Hrbek, Gary Gaetti and Tom Brunansky, who were all rookies in 1982. Gardner was one of the original Twins coming over from Washington after the 1960 season and played 45 games in a Twins uniform in 1961.

Goryl, 47, who managed the team since August 1980, became the second AL West manager to be fired this season, joining Maury Wills formerly of the Seattle Mariners. Goryl managed the Twins for just a total of  73 games and had a 34-38 record over parts of two seasons. Goryl played 2B, SS, and 3B for the Twins from 1962-1964.

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