The Minnesota Twins fired manager Ron Gardenhire this morning following yet another 90 loss season. Although there are brighter days on the horizon, the Twins organization has been one of stability. For season ticket holders, a lot of thought goes into making a purchase each year. Minnesota wanted to make sure to set the record straight.
Just hours after firing Gardenhire, the Twins sent out an email to each of their season ticket holders. It read:
With the 2014 season now complete, we’d like to take this opportunity to address news that Ron Gardenhire will not return as Manager of the Minnesota Twins. As a season ticket holder you remain among our most valued fans and we felt it was important to share perspective surrounding this decision and the direction of the franchise.
The Twins organization – and many of our fans – approached 2014 with hope and optimism surrounding the team’s ability to take a significant step forward in restoring the ballclub’s winning tradition. While several on-field positives emerged, our efforts failed to produce meaningful improvement in terms of the ultimate measuring stick – our win-loss record. The end result was disappointing for everyone associated with the Twins, and most importantly – our fans.
As the organization prepares for 2015, we have spent a great deal of time with Terry Ryan re-evaluating every aspect of our baseball operation. This comprehensive evaluation, which is ongoing, led us to collectively determine a managerial change is in the best interest of the franchise. Rest assured, this was not an easy decision, especially considering what Ron Gardenhire has meant to the Minnesota Twins. Since joining the organization in 1987, few people can match the overall positive impact Gardy has had on Twins Territory. His baseball acumen and leadership were central to six division titles, the development of countless players and a well-earned reputation as one of the game’s best managers. Off the field, few people in Minnesota sports history have built a more authentic connection within our community – and countless worthy causes – than Ron and Carol Gardenhire. With that commitment and success in mind, we are hopeful that Ron will remain with the Twins organization and continue to have the ability to help make our team – and our community – better.
As of today, we have commenced a search for a new manager. We are committed to vetting many internal and external candidates with the sole intent of finding the right person to help restore our winning culture and ultimately lead our major league club back to contention. As the managerial search process unfolds, our front office is also focused on our roster. We believe the current mix of veterans and emerging players shows promise. That said, we need to continue to explore all avenues with hopes of accelerating the path to success.
Finally, we’d like to take this opportunity to say THANK YOU. We are grateful for your ongoing dedication and support of Twins baseball. Everyone across Twins Territory deserves a competitive, winning major league team. Please know we are working harder than ever to ensure you have a team you can be proud of – both on and off the field of play. We look forward to seeing you back at Target Field again in 2015.
For the Twins, the letter is somewhat of a changing of the guard. In a state where change isn’t always widely accepted, this was a move that needed to be made. While Ron Gardenhire is a great person, the Twins needed to go a different direction in an effort to restore relevance.
Paul Molitor has emerged as the likely favorite for the Twins managerial position, but the process will still likely take some time to play out. Make sure to stay tuned for the Twins next move.