June 30, 2013
MINNEAPOLIS, Minn. - Former Mizzou ace and first round draft pick Kyle Gibson earned the win in his Major League Baseball debut yesterday as his Minnesota Twins defeated the Kansas City Royals, 6-2, at Target Field. Gibson is the first Minnesota Twins pitcher to be drafted in the first round and win his major league debut. He did it all in front of plenty of family and friends who were in attendance, including Mizzou head coach Tim Jamieson.
Gibson, a 2009 first round draft choice, had the pressure taken off of him early in the game as Minnesota scored five runs in the bottom of the first inning and one more in the second as he pitched with a 6-0 lead. In all, Gibson threw 91 pitches over 6.0 innings, allowing eight hits and two earned runs while striking out five against no walks. Of his 91 pitches, 64 were for strikes as he showed very good control in the outing. The Royals scratched just two runs off of the former Tigers ace on a pair of RBI singles from Alcides Escobar and Salvador Perez in the third inning. Nearly 37,000 fans were on hand to watch Gibson in his big league debut.
"It was an amazing day, really," Gibson told the Associated Press after the game. "I was pretty nervous the last couple of days leading up to it, and was able to calm the nerves somehow. I think seeing a couple of familiar faces before I started throwing, and a little prayer before the game definitely helped me calm my nerves, but it was a great day."
Of course, Gibson joins several former Mizzou players at the major league level; he is the third Tiger currently in a starting pitching rotation in the bigs and the fifth Tiger on a major league roster. With Gibson's win, former Mizzou pitchers now have 20 wins in the majors this season, of course highlighted by Max Scherzer's major league-leading 12 wins. Aaron Crow of the Royals has four wins and Nick Tepesch of the Texas Rangers has three.
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