The Canadian Press - ONLINE EDITION

Twins' thoughts with GM Terry Ryan, who is back home recovering from surgery

  • Print

FORT MYERS, Fla. - While listening to assistant general manager Rob Antony deliver the traditional clubhouse talk on the first day of full-squad workouts, Minnesota Twins reliever Brian Duensing kept thinking of Terry Ryan.

That speech, given on Saturday, had been Ryan's responsibility for all but four springs since he replaced Andy MacPhail as general manager nearly two decades ago. With Ryan recuperating back home in Eagan, Minn., following Feb. 11 surgery to remove a cancerous lump from his neck, Twins spring training isn't quite the same.

"When you see Terry Ryan each spring, you know, 'All right, it's here. It's time to go,'" Duensing said Monday. "Rob Antony gave that speech this time, and the whole time he was talking I could hear Terry Ryan giving the same speech. I could hear his voice. You could tell it was almost out of his mouth."

Antony, who had asked Ryan for copies of his previous camp-opening speeches, was wearing a black T-shirt that read "Stand Up To Cancer" as he delivered Saturday's welcome. All 110 members of the Twins' spring family, including 64 players in camp, wore the shirt in support of Ryan.

Dustin Morse, the Twins' baseball communications director, ordered the T-shirts and had his staff take pictures during the team's workout. The photos were then emailed to Ryan.

That included one of Morse and Twins director of team travel Mike Herman wearing the SUTC shirts.

Ryan, slowly regaining his strength, wrote back that he was fining Morse and Herman $1 apiece for wearing "Gilligan shoes" — Ryan's term for deck shoes — to work.

Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said the T-shirt idea was "pretty cool" and showed the organization's support "for Terry and everybody else that's going through this."

Third baseman Trevor Plouffe, whose mother and aunt are cancer survivors, smiled when asked what Ryan's reaction might be upon seeing Twins people in those T-shirts.

"He doesn't really show this side too often, but he might get a little emotional," Plouffe said. "I know he'll smile. Just to know we're thinking of him, that's a big thing for people going through something like that."

Twins officials have suggested it is unlikely that the 60-year-old Ryan would feel well enough to make a cameo at Twins camp this spring. Even though he passed his one-week checkup at the Mayo Clinic and was said to be progressing well, Ryan has pledged to devote his energy to making a full recovery.

Some within the organization have informally circled April 7, the date of the home opener against the Oakland Athletics, as a potential target for Ryan's return.

In the meantime, Antony is leaning on fellow vice-president Mike Radcliff, special assistant Wayne Krivsky, and administrator Jack Goin to help keep camp running smoothly. With job battles in centre field, the back of the rotation, catcher and utility infield, the Twins have a busier-than-usual spring agenda.

It's unclear how closely Ryan will be able or allowed to follow the daily events this spring, but it should help that all 16 Twins home games will be broadcast on Fox Sports North in the Twin Cities. There are no plans to have major league video manager Sean Harlin send footage of daily workouts to Ryan.

"I think he understands we're a family," Twins pitcher Mike Pelfrey said. "Hopefully the doctors take care of anything, but anything we can do we're definitely here for him."

NOTES: Rookie catcher Josmil Pinto resumed limited drill work after missing three days because of a stiff lower back. Pinto was able to take some light swings and do some throwing. He also caught a bullpen session. ... SS Pedro Florimon, who underwent an appendectomy last Monday, rode a stationary bike for 20 minute. He has been approved to lift 15-20 pounds in the weight room and hopes to resume hitting in the cage next week.

Fact Check

Fact Check

Have you found an error, or know of something we’ve missed in one of our stories?
Please use the form below and let us know.

* Required
  • Please post the headline of the story or the title of the video with the error.

  • Please post exactly what was wrong with the story.

  • Please indicate your source for the correct information.

  • Yes


  • This will only be used to contact you if we have a question about your submission, it will not be used to identify you or be published.

  • Cancel

Having problems with the form?

Contact Us Directly
  • Print

You can comment on most stories on You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

You can comment on most stories on You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

Have Your Say

New to commenting? Check out our Frequently Asked Questions.

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscribers only. why?

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press Subscribers only. why?

The Winnipeg Free Press does not necessarily endorse any of the views posted. By submitting your comment, you agree to our Terms and Conditions. These terms were revised effective April 16, 2010.


Make text: Larger | Smaller


Jim Flaherty remembered at visitation as irreplaceable

View more like this

Photo Store Gallery

  • Goose sits in high grass near Marion Friday afternoon for cover -See Bryksa 30 Day goose challenge- Day 18 - May 25, 2012   (JOE BRYKSA / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS)
  • A golfer looks for his ball in a water trap at John Blumberg Golf Course Friday afternoon as geese and goslings run for safety- See Joe Bryksa’s 30 day goose challenge- Day 24– June 15, 2012   (JOE BRYKSA / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS)

View More Gallery Photos


What Western Conference teams will emerge from the first round of the NHL playoffs?

View Results

Ads by Google