Minneapolis/St. Paul, MN – The Minnesota Twins were informed Tuesday that Rocco Baldelli has been named the American League Manager of the Year by the Baseball Writers Association of America.
Baldelli led the Twins to their first American League Central division title since 2010 with a record of 101-61. Baldelli becomes the fourth manager in club history to win the award, joining Tom Kelly (1991), Ron Gardenhire (2010) and Paul Molitor (2017). Behind Baldelli, the Twins joined the Houston Astros (107 wins), the Los Angeles Dodgers (106 wins) and the New York Yankees (103 wins) as the only four clubs in baseball with 100-plus victories.
He became the winningest first-year manager in Twins/Senators franchise history and seventh first-year manager in baseball history to reach 100-plus wins. The Twins’ 101 wins marked the second-most in Minnesota history, behind only the 1965 American League Champions (102-60). Baldelli joined Billy Martin (1969), Bill Rigney (1970) and Ron Gardenhire (2002) as the fourth Minnesota skipper to lead the team to the postseason in his first season at the helm.
The award, voted on by 30 members of the Baseball Writers Association of America, was first given in 1983. Prior to that, Twins manager Sam Mele received unofficial honors for his leadership of Minnesota’s pennant-winning team in 1965.