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Former Minnesota Twin Greg Gagne to throw out first pitch

Stingers announce 2013 Home Opener Guest  
Former Minnesota Twin and 2-Time World Series Champion Greg Gagne to throw out first pitch

WILLMAR, MN- The Willmar Stingers are pleased to announce that former Minnesota Twins shortstop Greg Gagne will be on hand to throw out the ceremonial first pitch at 7 p.m. for the Home Opener on May 29th presented by Marcus Construction.

Along with celebrating the start of the 2013 season, Marcus Construction and the Stingers will be recognizing the 100,000th fan to enter the Bee Hive on opening night. Over the first three seasons the Stingers have drawn 99,033 people through the gates.  The 967th person to enter Bill Taunton Stadium Wednesday night will receive a plaque commemorating them as the 100,000th fan and this member of Stinger Nation will be awarded a pair of reserved season tickets for the remainder of the 2013 season.

Gagne began made his major league debut June 5, 1983 with the Minnesota Twins at the age of 21.  In 1985, his first full season with the Twins, Gagne played in 114 games, hit .225, and had an OPS of .596.
Gagne was a mainstay in the Twins everyday lineup from 1985-1992.  During his 10 seasons with the Twins, Gagne was one of seven players to be a part of Minnesota’s 2 World Series winning teams.  In the decisive Game 7 win versus the Cardinals in 1987, Gagne had the go-ahead 2 RBI single to help the Twins secure their first world championship.

The 1991 season concluded with the Twins second World Series in 4 seasons, with Gagne leaving a last mark in this series as well.  In Game 1, Gagne blasted a 3-run home run in the 5th inning to put the Twins up 5-0 in the game.  This World Series featured two of most iconic moments in baseball history with Kirby Puckett’s walk off home run in Game 6 and Jack Morris’ 10 inning shutout pitching performance to win Game 7 for the Twins.

Never hitting more than 14 home runs throughout his 15 year major league career, Gagne’s glove did more talking than his bat.  In 1987, Gagne set a Twins record for shortstops with 47 straight errorless games.  With a career fielding percentage of .972, giving him the 56th best fielding percentage all time for shortstops.

Even though Gagne spent 3 years with the Kansas City Royals and 2 seasons with the LA Dodgers, Gagne will always be remembered for his time in Minnesota.  In 2010, Gagne was inducted as the 22nd member of the Minnesota Twins Hall of Fame.

Fans will have the opportunity to meet Greg and receive autographs on Wednesday, May 29th beginning at 6 p.m. at Bill Taunton Stadium. The Stingers play host to the Thunder Bay Border Cats to start the 2013 regular season.

“We are excited to have Greg to kick off the 2013 Stingers season,” General Manager Nick McCallum said. “Greg is a perfect guest to open our fourth season of play at the Bee Hive.”

Season tickets for the 2013 season are $169 for reserved seat backs and $199 for box seats. For more information regarding the Home Opener presented by Marcus Construction, visit www.willmarstingers.com or call 320-222-2010. The 2013 season is presented by Charter.

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