Phil Miller covered three seasons of Twins baseball, but that was at a different ballpark for a different newspaper. Now Miller returns to the baseball beat after joining the Star Tribune as the Gopher football writer in 2010, and he won't miss the dingy dome for a minute. In addition to the Twins and Gophers, Miller covered the Utah Jazz and the NBA for six years at The Salt Lake Tribune.

Postgame: Mustache returns and Pavano pitches a shutout. Coincidence?

Posted by: Phil Miller under Twins game coverage Updated: September 28, 2011 - 11:48 PM

Carl Pavano's facial hair was the talk of the Twin Cities in 2010 -- the Pavanostache, peopled called it -- and in Wednesday's season finale, it was finally back.

Maybe it's no coincidence that Pavano pitched his first shutout of the year, holding the Royals to five hits in a 1-0 victory at Target Field.

Afterward, the righthander said he actually wanted to wear a handlebar mustache.

"I had a ski accident about five or six years ago where I hit a tree, so it really doesn’t grow good over here," Pavano said, pointing to the left side of his mouth. "It’s like really terrible. So I ended up going to the mustache, and it’s kind of funny how that worked out right there. First mustache I’ve had all year. I've tried everything else."

Last year, Pavano went 17-11 with a 3.75 ERA and ran off one of his best streaks after shaving his goatee down to a mustache. This has been more of an up-and-down year for Pavano, but he finished 9-13 with a 4.30 ERA and tossed a team-high 222 innings.

"I don’t know what else to say; everyone wants to point to the 'stache," Pavano said. "I’m not that superstitious, but I was trying to have a little fun. And we definitely had some fun tonight winning the ballgame, so whatever you have to do.

"Maybe it’ll be back in spring training, I don’t know. The elusive mustache."

At this point, the Twins should make it mandatory.

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