Chicago, IL (SportsNetwork.com) - Tommy Milone pitched a strong 7 2/3 innings to lead the Minnesota Twins to a 6-0 win over the Chicago White Sox.
Milone (1-0) allowed just two hits and two walks with seven strikeouts to earn his first win as a Twin since last summer's trade from Oakland. It also gave Hall of Famer Paul Molitor his first win as Minnesota's new manager.
"We talk a lot about the importance of starting pitching," said Molitor. "Tommy was great. He got a couple outs in the first inning before extending himself to about 25 pitches to get out of the first, but he settled down."
The Twins collected 10 hits and drew nine walks after scoring just one run in a three-game sweep at the hands of the Tigers to start the season. Brian Dozier hit Minnesota's first home run of the year, and Jordan Schafer drove in two insurance runs in the final inning.
Hector Noesi (0-1) was ineffective from the start for the White Sox despite striking out six batters in 4 2/3 innings. He allowed two runs on four hits and six walks.
The White Sox, who played their home opener, were only able to get three hits as they fell to 0-4 for the first time since 1995.
"Obviously, we'd like to start out a lot better, but we have a good team," said Chicago infielder Gordon Beckham.
Minnesota only needed an inning to equal its production from the season's opening series thanks to Noesi's wildness. Eduardo Escobar got hit by a pitch and advanced to second on a wild pitch before scoring on Joe Mauer's single.
Milone had a rocky start of his own when he issued a pair of two-out walks, but Adam LaRoche struck out swinging to end the bottom half of the first.
Noesi's struggles continued an inning later, but he struck out Torii Hunter with the bases loaded to hold Chicago's deficit to one.
Milone allowed his first hit, a Micah Johnson bunt single, in the third. Johnson moved up to second on Adam Eaton's groundout, but he was picked off by Milone when he attempted to steal third base. Milone would not allow another batter to reach base until Tyler Flowers' double with two outs in the eighth knocked him out of the game.
After settling in for a couple innings, Noesi's control issues returned in the fifth. With two outs, he walked Trevor Plouffe to load the bases and then uncorked a wild pitch to hand the Twins a 2-0 lead. After Noesi finished that at-bat by intentionally walking Oswaldo Arcia, Matt Albers came on and got out of the bases-loaded jam.
In the sixth, Dozier took Albers deep for a solo home run.
The Twins added three insurance runs in the ninth off Chicago reliever Zach Putnam. Hunter attempted to steal third when Kurt Suzuki singled deep in the hole on the left side. Hunter turned the corner and headed to the plate, and a poor throw home by Alexei Ramirez allowed Hunter to score and two runners move into scoring position. Schafer made the White Sox pay with a two-out single.
Brian Duensing recorded the last out of the eighth for Minnesota and recorded the save with a clean ninth inning. Eaton nearly broke up the shutout when he tagged from third on Jose Abreu's pop-up to shallow left field, but Escobar gunned him down at the plate to end the game.
Mauer reached base four times with a hit and three walks ... Dozier and Suzuki had two hits apiece ... Chicago had won its last seven home openers ... The Twins placed starter Ricky Nolasco on the disabled list with elbow inflammation ... Ramirez wore a No. 9 uniform to honor White Sox great Minnie Minoso who died last month ... Former White Sox starter Jose Contreras threw out the first pitch as Chicago celebrates the 10th anniversary of its last World Series win.