TAMPA, FLA - Twins manager Ron Gardenhire, before Friday's game against the Yankees, made it clear what was at stake for righthander Kyle Gibson, ``This is a big one for Gibby, right here,'' Gardenhire said.
Gibson is off to a strong start in his drive to win a spot on the pitching staff. And he helped his case a little more on Friday by shaking off early struggles in his four-inning outing during the Twins 7-3 win over the Yankees at George M. Steinbrenner Field.
After giving up three runs in the first inning, Gibson threw three scoreless innings on 30 pitches.
The Twins got a home run from Brian Dozier and two RBI singles from Chris Colabello as they roared past the Yankees, who were short-handed as several regulars are in Panama for a weekend series against Miami.
Gibson gave up three runs on three hits and two walks. He was 0-2 in the first inning to Jacoby Ellsbury and Brian Roberts before giving up doubles to both. The Yankees tacked on two more runs after that.
``I just tried to keep getting ahead,'' Gibson said. ``I knew that if I made a little better pitches on two strikes or 1-1 I was going to have better results.''
Gibson went on to retire nine of the last 10 batters he faced.