The Twins will spend their 31st spring training season at the CenturyLink Sports Complex in 2022. Spurred by the state-of-the-art facility, the Twins won the 1991 World Series after enjoying their most successful Spring Training camp in history as they posted a record-high 21 wins. In 29 years the Twins have drawn a total of 3,078,934 for 461 dates, an average of 6,679 per game (total does not include 17 replacement games in 1995 which drew 49,240 fans). The Twins broke the single-season average attendance mark in 2011 with 8,091 fans per game.
Located south of downtown Fort Myers near Interstate Highway 75, the CenturyLink Sports Complex is home to two of the Twins minor league affiliates, housing both the Mighty Mussels of the Advanced-A Florida State League and the Rookie-level Gulf Coast League Twins.
Originally built in 1991 at a cost of $14 million, the CenturyLink Sports Complex now features six full and two half-fields, the centerpiece of which is an 8,730-seat stadium where the Major League Twins play their exhibition games and conduct daily workouts. The main stadium was renamed William H. Hammond Stadium during the 1994 spring season in honor of the deputy county manager who was instrumental in getting the complex approved and bringing the Twins to Lee County.
The parking rows all feature street signs named to honor former Twins greats — including Bert Blyleven, Kirby Puckett and Kent Hrbek. There is also a waterfall fountain near the stadium’s entrance, which has been continually recognized as a landmark among Grapefruit League facilities.
Prior to the start of the 2008 spring schedule, new lights and box seats were installed at Hammond Stadium. In 2009, fans were kept up-to-date with a new scoreboard in left center field that was moved to straight away left field after Phase II of the renovation in 2014. In 2017, the scoreboard was upgraded with a fully digital video board.
Phase I of the full-scale renovation of the stadium in 2014 delivered a second grass berm in left field. The outfield boardwalk features four different types of seating: drink rails, lawn, four-top tables and chair seating. Two new full-service bars were installed down the third base line and in right field. The CenturyLink Sports Complex also features a softball complex and other athletic facilities for use by Lee County organizations, plus an eight-acre water-management lake for public fishing.
The Twins trained in Orlando from 1936 (with the exception of the war years of 1943, ’44 and ’45, when they conditioned in College Park, Md.) to 1990, and their minor league clubs moved to Terry Park in Fort Myers in 1990, after headquartering in Melbourne, Fla., from 1964–89. In June of 2012, the Twins signed a 20-year lease extension with Lee County for use of the complex.
Lescher and Mahoney, an architectural and engineering firm based in Tampa, were the lead architects for the original project, with design assistance from Ellerbe-Becket of Kansas City, Mo. Case Contracting Company of Plant City, Fla., was the contractor. For the renovation, Populous was the lead architecture firm and Manhattan Construction was the contractor.