Gibson pitches 8 strong innings, Twins beat White Sox 1-0
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) One run was plenty for Kyle Gibson on Friday night.
Gibson pitched eight strong innings, Kennys Vargas scored on a wild pitch and the Minnesota Twins beat the Chicago White Sox 1-0 Friday night.
Glen Perkins pitched a tense ninth inning for his seventh save to give the Twins their fifth win in seven games. Chicago had runners on second and third with two outs in its last at-bat, but Tyler Flowers struck out looking.
Gibson (2-2) gave up just four hits, struck out four and walked one. After a rough first start of the season where he gave up six earned runs in 3 2-3 innings, Gibson has posted a 2.03 ERA over his last four outings, allowing just six earned runs in 26 2-3 innings.
''There's times where when I execute I'm pretty confident,'' he said.
Torii Hunter added: ''I definitely think he's probably the No. 1 guy right now.''
Jose Quintana (1-2) allowed six hits and one earned run in seven innings for the White Sox, whose offensive woes continued.
''He was sharp, he got into a couple binds and he battled through it,'' Chicago manager Robin Ventura said. ''The (wild pitch) is just one of those youd like to have back.''
Chicago has scored four runs in its past three games. Adam LaRoche had two hits.
''The handful of pitches (Gibson) left up, we hit them hard. Were going through one of those stretches where were just not getting in going, across the board. Itll turn, just sucks going through it,'' LaRoche said.
Minnesota broke a scoreless tie in the fifth.
Vargas and Shane Robinson led off with singles and were on second and third with two outs when Quintana threw a pitch in the dirt on a 1-2 count to Hunter allowing Vargas - listed at 6-foot-5 and 289 pounds in the media guide - to rumble in from third base standing up.
In the top of the inning, Hunter made a catch before crashing into the wall to rob leadoff hitter Conor Gillaspie and, after a single by Flowers, Joe Mauer dove to his right to start a force play at second base.
''Torii's catch was important mainly because starting off an inning with a guy on second before there's one out is a big difference,'' Gibson said.
Chicago had the bases loaded and one out in the second, but Flowers grounded into a double play.
Minnesota loaded the bases with one out in the fourth, but Kurt Suzuki struck out on a check-swing that would have been ball four. Eduardo Escobar then hit a ground ball deep in the hole at short. Alexei Ramirez's throw to first was ruled late on the field, but video review showed the throw beat Escobar to the bag for the third out.
White Sox: OF Adam Eaton missed the game with an illness and Ventura said a few other Chicago players are not 100 percent healthy. With Eaton out, 2B Micah Johnson led off for the first time this season and struck out twice.
Twins: RHP Phil Hughes felt no discomfort throwing a bullpen session and remains on track to start Monday against Oakland. Hughes left Wednesday's start with a left hip flexor strain.
MINNESOTA ROSTER MOVES
Minnesota starting pitcher Ricky Nolasco and reliever Brian Duensing were activated off the disabled list after the game. To make room, Tommy Milone and Caleb Thielbar were sent to Triple-A Rochester.
The Twins also placed RHP Tim Stauffer on the disabled list - retroactive to April 30 - with a right intercostal strain and recalled RHP Ryan Pressly from Triple-A Rochester. Stauffer has struggled since signing as a free agent, posting an 8.38 ERA in eight relief appearances while allowing nine earned runs and 16 hits in 9 2-3 innings.
The teams are scheduled to play the third game of this four-game series Saturday afternoon. Coming off the disabled list, Minnesota's Ricky Nolasco (0-1, 18.00) is scheduled to pitch against Chicago's Hector Noesi (0-2, 5.23). Noesi is 0-5 with a 4.89 ERA in his last seven starts.