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Tom Kelly is MoonDogs Opening Night Guest

(Mankato, Minn.)– The Mankato MoonDogs Baseball Club, a member of the Northwoods League, is excited to announce former Minnesota Twins manager Tom Kelly as the featured opening night guest. The June 2 opening night is presented by Wealth Enhancement and will be followed by a fireworks show.

A native of Graceville, Minnesota, Kelly has been associated with the Twins for more than 30 years. A career minor leaguer, he spent part of one season playing with the Twins in 1975. After rising through the minor league ranks as a coach and manager, Kelly became the Twins’ third-base coach in 1983 as a member of Billy Gardner’s staff.

Kelly took over as manager on Sept. 12, 1986, replacing Ray Miller. By the end of his tenure, Kelly’s 15-year term with the Twins was the longest of any active head coach or manager among the nation’s four major professional sports leagues at that time.

Minnesota’s record under Kelly’s leadership was 1,140-1,244. He led the Twins to their first world championship over the St. Louis Cardinals in 1987, his first full season on the job. A second World Series title followed in 1991 after a dramatic Game 7 victory over the Atlanta Braves. He was named the American League Manager of the Year in 1991.

Kelly was inducted in the Twins Hall of Fame with the class of 2002. Currently, he serves as a Special Assistant to Twins General Manager, Bill Smith. June 2 will be Kelly’s first appearance in Mankato at a MoonDogs game.

"It will be a great honor to have two-time World Champion Twins Manager Tom Kelly to kick off the 2010 season,” said MoonDogs General Manager Kyle Mrozek. "We talk to our players about playing ‘Twins Baseball’ –making the good fundamental plays and always playing hard- Kelly, along with Kirby Puckett, Terry Ryan and many others created this great brand of baseball that we fashion our team after.”

Kelly will be on hand at Franklin Rogers to help kick off the 2010 season, where he will throw out the first pitch, and be available to sign autographs. The MoonDogs and Wealth Enhancement are excited to bring Kelly to Mankato, and are looking forward to a memorable Home Opener.

The Mankato MoonDogs 2010 Season and Home Opener is set for Wednesday, June 2 at 7:05 PM against the defending Northwoods League Champion Rochester Honkers. To be part of all the exciting MoonDogs action this summer, pick up your season tickets on sale now, along with group and hospitality tickets for all your event needs. For more information visit the team website at www.mankatomoondogs.com or call the MoonDogs Ticket Office at 507-625-7047.