Twins: Former manager Ron Gardenhire to throw 1st pitch for home opener
Tuesday, the Minnesota Twins announced plans for the team’s 2021 home opener on April 8.
Former Twins manager Ron Gardenhire — who led the team for 13 seasons and recently retired after a 29-year career as a coach, will throw out the ceremonial first pitch to his son — Toby, who will manage the St. Paul Saints in the club’s first year as the Twins’ Triple-A affiliate.
Below are the other plans announced by the Twins:
- A video tribute will honor a "Starting Lineup" representing those working as educators and school personnel across the state.
- A "3M Play Ball Frontline Hero" from M Health Fairview will be recognized.
- A moment of silence will follow an in-memoriam video, which will honor those in the MLB and Minnesota sports community who died during the offseason, including Twins bench coach Mike Bell, who died from cancer last week. The team will also wear a special "MB" patch on uniforms throughout the season. Sid Hartman, Tom Hanneman and those lost to COVID-19 will also be honored.
- After not having fans last year, fans will be called upon to lead "Take Me Out to the Ballgame" during the seventh-inning stretch.
- The team will debut a wall graphic with a call to "End Racism."
- Local educator and performer Natalia Romero Arbeláez will sing the national anthem.
Also, the team announced that CHS Field, home of the Saints, will open on April 8 to host a physically distanced crowd for a viewing party of the home opener. The Saints won’t officially open the Triple-A season until May 11.
The Twins also reiterated that the organization is focused on making the game day experience a safe one for all fans, staff and players. Details about the team’s safety protocols can be found here.
Minnesota opens its 2021 season on April 1 in Milwaukee before hosting its first home game on April 8 against Seattle.