– Paul Molitor takes charge as the 13th manager in Twins history when workouts start Monday. Two of those, No. 1 Cookie Lavagetto (66 games) and No. 8 Johnny Goryl (72), were such short-timers in Minnesota that no reasonable opinion can be offered.

I did not cover managers of the '60s. I did have opinions, as a dedicated Twins follower dating to April 11, 1961, when Pete Ramos shut out the Yankees in the Bronx.

Here is how I rate the 10 managers, in reverse order, that lasted at least a season with the Twins:

10. Ray Miller (1986-87). Well-respected pitching coach. Didn't get it as a manager.

9. Cal Ermer (1967-68). Got to know him later and was a terrific gentleman. His low-key demeanor stabilized an extra-talented Twins team for "the Great Race" of 1967, but that same bunch somehow tumbled to below .500 in 1968.

8. Billy Martin (1969). One season, 97-65, and the fans loved him. He could run a game, and the alcoholism might not have owned him completely in 1969. But I saw plenty of him in other managerial settings, and Billy was a lout.

7. Bill Rigney (1970-72). Walked into a PR nightmare after the Martin firing and went 98-64 in 1970. Rig was easy to like, but also high on the bull-slinging meter.

6. Billy Gardner (1981-85). All-time character who managed the Twins' youth movement after the apocalypse of free agency struck Calvin Griffith's franchise.

5. Frank Quilici (1972-75). The most underrated. My first year on Twins beat full-time was 1974. Frank got an 82-80 finish out of that crew … a borderline miracle.

4. Gene Mauch (1976-80). I loved the guy. He brought the franchise back to life. The flaw: His workload abuse of key relievers was hard to digest.

3. Ron Gardenhire (2002-14). Lots of wins and took care of his pitchers. Ask Johan Santana.

2. Sam Mele (1961-67). Managed Twins to 1965 World Series in the only way possible then: by finishing first in a 10-team league.

1. Tom Kelly (1986-2001). Sharpest guy in any dugout. Ask Paul Molitor.