The 2015 Minnesota Twins team will always hold a special place in my heart. Though not exactly the greatest collection of talent ever assembled (they finished 83-79, good for second place in the Central behind the Kansas City Royals), simply being competitive until the final weekend of the season was a marked improvement from the utter doldrums of 2011-2014. Truth be told, ‘15 really re-invigorated my Twins fandom, especially when it came to attending contests at Target Field.
That season, two players who recently departed the Twins organization made big impacts:
Eddie Rosario—just non-tendered by the club—debuted in 2015, famously homering on the first pitch he saw in the bigs:
In 474 PA that season, Rosario collected 18 doubles, 15 home runs, 13 triples, and 11 stolen bases.
His subsequent Twins tenure was basically a rollercoaster ride: he possessed a flair for the dramatic, yet was also known for infuriating mental lapses. Basically, he was Alexi Casilla with a much higher upside.
Perhaps my favorite Rosie moment? Showing off his cannon arm by fielding a ball off the Green Monster in Fenway and subsequently ending a Twins victory at the dish:
Trevor May—who just signed a two-year deal with the New York Mets—also made a big impact during the 2015 season. Over 48 games (16 as a starter), May pitched 114.2 innings with a 102 ERA+ and a 4.23 K/BB ratio. From what I recall, he was utterly dominant down the stretch that year.
After ‘15, May was almost as much of a rollercoaster as Rosario, looking at times like a top tier setup man and other times being injured/ineffective. For whatever reason, the mental imagery I’ll always take from a May appearance is him struggling in some way, but then seemingly “flipping a switch” and just mowing batters down with his high-velocity high fastballs:
With the departures of Eddie & Trevor, here are the players from the 2015 roster who remain in the Twins organization: Miguel Sano (335 PA in ‘15), Byron Buxton (138 PA), Jorge Polanco (12 PA), Max Kepler (7 PA), Tyler Duffey (58 IP), and Caleb Thielbar (5 IP). That’s it and that’s all. Just five years removed, only a handful of players have made it to the subsequent decade with the Twins.
I wish nothing but the best for Rosario and May going forward. More often than not, their time in Twins Territory was successful and exciting. Despite the relentless, insatiable roster churn that defines Major League Baseball, to paraphrase Humphrey Bogart: “We’ll always have 2015”.