Twins vice president of player personnel Mike Radcliff passed away today following a three-plus year battle with cancer, the organization announced. He was 66 years old.
“The Minnesota Twins today mourn the loss of Mike Radcliff,” the franchise said in a statement. “Mike was the heart and soul of our scouting department for over 30 years, a man who was beloved and respected by staff, players, fellow scouts, agents and his peers alike. One of baseball’s most revered talent evaluators, his character, work ethic, kindness and sense of humor set the tone for our player development and evaluation processes.
His baseball legacy lives on in the number of Twins Hall of Famers, All-Stars and great teams that bear his fingerprints, while his impact as a person will be forever felt by those that knew him. In the words of his trade, Mike was the epitome of a five-tool player, and he will be greatly missed across Twins Territory. Our deepest sympathies are with his wife Sherry, son Brett, daughter Erin and the entire Radcliff family during this difficult time.”
Radcliff spent the better part of four decades with Minnesota. First hired as an area scout in 1987, he’d worked his way to scouting director within six years. During his tenure as scouting director, the Twins selected numerous players who logged key roles on the Minnesota teams of the 2000’s — including Justin Morneau, Torii Hunter and recent Twins’ Hall of Fame inductee Joe Mauer.
In 2007, the organization gave Radcliff the title of vice president of player personnel — a role he would hold for the rest of his career. He remained involved in the scouting department and played a part in the franchise’s drafting and/or signing of players like Byron Buxton, Max Kepler and Jorge Polanco.
The 2011 recipient of the Midwest Scout of the Year Award from Major League Baseball, he was inducted into the Professional Scouts Hall of Fame a few years ago. Radcliff’s passing has resulted in a flood of tributes from colleagues, peers and media personnel. MLBTR joins countless others around the game in sending our condolences to Radcliff’s family, friends, colleagues and the number of players whose careers he impacted.