Forgotten anniversaries: 1963 Twins

  • Updated: June 21, 2013 - 12:34 AM

The Twins had 91 wins for the second year in a row but fell short of a pennant.

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Harmon Killebrew, the Twins left fielder in 1963, had a team-high 45 home runs and was fourth in AL MVP voting.

Photo: Star Tribune file,

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Plenty of Minnesota sports anniversaries and years are embedded in our collective sports minds. Merely mention 1987, 1991 or 1998, for example, and the Twins’ two World Series titles plus the Vikings’ 15-1 season spring immediately to mind. But what about some lesser-known anniversaries? We’re here to take a look back at some of those, in increments of five years, dating backward from 2013.

Today, to finish up the series: The 1963 Twins — and five things you might have forgotten about that season (or perhaps never knew).

1. In case you didn’t know too much about the franchise history before the team moved from Washington, D.C., to Minnesota, well … things were pretty terrible. The Senators had only one season above .500 in the 15 seasons before moving to Minnesota. The Twins were 70-90-1 their first year here in 1961, then suddenly started to get better. That includes 1963, when an underrated squad went 91-70, their second 91-victory season in a row.

2. Led by Camilo Pascual, who went 21-9 with a 2.46 ERA, the Twins’ pitching staff was downright stingy (particularly by today’s standards). They gave up just 602 runs all season, an average of 3.7 per game. The World Series-winning Twins of 1987, by contrast, gave up 806 runs.

3. Could they hit the ball over the fence? Of course, they could. Harmon Killebrew led the way with 45 home runs, while Bob Allison hit 35 and Jimmie Hall 33. As a team, the Twins hit 225 home runs, ranking first in the American League.

4. The Twins were just 1½ games out of first place in late June, but a stretch of nine losses in 10 games pretty much knocked them out of contention. Remember, this was before division play — and waaaaay before any sort of wild-card system. So even though they finished with 91 victories, they were never closer than 12 games from first place (or making the playoffs) in September.

5. Slow play has been a big topic of discussion this season. That year’s Twins team played more than half of its games (81 of 161) in 2 hours, 30 minutes or less. It played six games in two hours or less. Can you even imagine?

Michael Rand

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Kansas City 1 Bottom 2nd Inning
San Francisco 0
Detroit 10/26/14 8:30 AM
Atlanta
Buffalo 10/26/14 12:00 PM
NY Jets
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Dallas
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Carolina
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Memphis 27
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Chicago 48
Phoenix 8:00 PM
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Denver 9:30 PM
Golden State
Portland 9:30 PM
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New Jersey 1
Tampa Bay 1 2nd Prd
Winnipeg 0
Vancouver 8:00 PM
Colorado
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Edmonton
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Anaheim
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(18) East Carolina 31
Miami-Florida 30 FINAL
Virginia Tech 6
So Florida 3 3rd Qtr
Cincinnati 20
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South Alabama 10
BYU 8:00 PM
Boise State
(6) Oregon 9:00 PM
California
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(16) Nebraska
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Wisconsin
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(11) Kansas State
Minnesota 10/25/14 11:00 AM
Illinois
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(23) Marshall
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(1) Miss State 10/25/14 2:30 PM
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Georgia Tech 10/25/14 2:30 PM
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(22) West Virginia 10/25/14 2:30 PM
Oklahoma State
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(10) TCU
Michigan 10/25/14 2:30 PM
(8) Michigan State
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Central Mich 10/25/14 2:30 PM
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(15) Arizona 10/25/14 5:00 PM
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Colorado State
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(21) Clemson
Texas State 10/25/14 6:00 PM
ULM
(3) Ole Miss 10/25/14 6:15 PM
(24) LSU
(4) Alabama 10/25/14 6:30 PM
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(5) Auburn
(13) Ohio State 10/25/14 7:00 PM
Penn State
(20) USC 10/25/14 9:00 PM
(19) Utah
(14) Arizona State 10/25/14 9:45 PM
Washington
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Hawaii
(2) Florida State 10/30/14 6:30 PM
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Ga Southern
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(16) Nebraska
(17) Oklahoma 11/1/14 2:00 AM
Iowa State
Oklahoma State 11/1/14 2:00 AM
(11) Kansas State
(10) TCU 11/1/14 2:00 AM
(22) West Virginia
Texas 11/1/14 2:00 AM
Texas Tech
Northwestern 11/1/14 2:00 AM
Iowa
Maryland 11/1/14 2:00 AM
Penn State
Houston 1 1st Half 20:00
Chicago 0
Montreal 23 0:00
Ottawa 10
Saskatchewan 8:30 PM
Calgary
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Brt Columbia 10/25/14 6:00 PM
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