Taking a free one

There was some irony in the Mariners’ decision to intentionally walk Aaron Hicks on Thursday in order to pitch to Joe Mauer, given that Hicks had only been given a free pass once before in his career. Mauer has led the Twins in intentional walks for seven consecutive seasons, including this one. Here are Twins all-time leaders in intentional walks:

153 <CHARENTITY>7</CHARENTITY>Harmon Killebrew

131 Tony Oliva

125 Mauer

110 Kent Hrbek

99 Rod Carew

Giving a free one

While we’re at it, who have the Twins issued the most intentional walks to in their history? It’s an interesting list:

20 George Brett

17 Miguel Cabrera

15 Cal Ripken Jr.

14 Frank Howard

14 Ken Griffey Jr.

The best there ever was

The 1965 Twins, champions of the American League, might have lost the World Series in seven games to the Los Angeles Dodgers, but they were the winningest team in the franchise’s 55-year history in Minnesota. The best regular seasons ever by the Twins:

1965: 102-60 (AL champs)

1970: 98-64 (West champs)

1969: 97-65 (West champs)

2006: 96-66 (Central champs)

1991: 95-67 (World Series champs)