Cool of the Evening


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About Cool of the Evening

The lineup card was constantly an unfinished crossword puzzle to Minnesota Twins' manager Sam Mele during the chilly, damp, storm-ravaged Minnesota summer of 1965.

  • Mele ran out of fingers counting injuries to his starting catcher.
  • Stars Tony Oliva, Harmon Killebrew and Bob Allison suffered injuries and batting slumps.
  • A pitcher the team considered releasing outright ultimately welded together the pitching staff.
  • In a league of 25-man rosters, the Twins played the season with essentially 24.
  • A new coaching staff, featuring Billy Martin conflicted so badly that one coach decided to locker with the players.

Metropolitan Stadium
Images from the book
Spring training in Orlando was a struggle, but when the season began the wins rolled in. Fans shelved their concerns about devastating Midwestern storms and the Vietnam War to follow the team.

Former journalist and internationally published writer Jim Thielman covered the Minnesota Twins from 1977 to 1993. He pulls readers back to 1965 to show how the Minnesota Twins dethroned the New York Yankees to win the American League pennant in the 2005 book Cool of the Evening: The 1965 Minnesota Twins.

Why that title?

  • Man, it's Minnesota. It's cool there. And 1965 was an unusually chilly, wet summer. Most games at Metropolitan Stadium were watched in - you got it - the cool of the evening.
  • An old baseball saying refers to "the cool of the evening," when players lounged in hotel lobbies, on porches and rail cars and reflected on a game well played, a good effort.

This was before DISH Network.

Cool on CD Remember the '87 Twins

The Twins held a meeting in Baltimore after clinching the pennant in Washington the final week of September. The purpose was to decide how to divide the money from the upcoming World Series.

"I guess we gave out more full shares than any other club in history," catcher Earl Battey said, "but it was hard to turn people down. We like to share the wealth."