Milone officially part of Twins' rotation

Milone officially part of Twins' rotation

TAMPA, Fla. -- Tommy Milone has secured his spot in the Twins' rotation and will start the first game of the club's second series of the season, at Kansas City on April 8.

The left-hander won the spot with solid pitching: a 2.40 ERA in 15 innings with nine strikeouts this spring.

"He's been spot on," Twins manager Paul Molitor said. "He hasn't really had a hiccup or a blemish along the way. He's been pretty solid from the start, and I think he's earned that right to be part of that rotation."

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Twins general manager Terry Ryan said that Milone "didn't put any doubt in our minds."

"All he did was go out and execute about every time that he went out," Ryan said. "He was in position to win a spot and he won it. No questions, no setbacks, no injuries."

With the addition of Milone, that left just the No. 5 spot open for the Twins. Right-handers Ricky Nolasco and Tyler Duffey were competing for the job. Duffey was optioned to Triple-A Rochester on Tuesday.

Ryan said the preference was to solidify the rotation sooner rather than later.

"Every outing is a performance that you take into consideration," Ryan said. "It's the whole ball of work, it's not just one outing. We're in a situation that's probably pretty healthy for our organization. We've got some choices to make and there's not much separation, but you have to make a call eventually because we're running out of calendar space."

Duffey saw his first Major League time last season, going 5-1 in 10 starts with a 3.10 ERA. Nolasco, meanwhile, has made just 35 starts in his first two seasons with Minnesota, accumulating a 5.64 ERA with the team.

Greg Zeck is a contributor to This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.