Since no one signed up for some of the game recaps, I decided to try to fill in.
As the old saying goes, there are Opening Day Pitchers and there are guys who pitch on Opening Day. Ricky Nolasco clearly falls into the latter category. He's no one's idea of an ace, but he has been an average-to-a-bit-below-average pitcher, and that's what he probably will be this year. Vanimal II is always possible, but it doesn't seem likely.
Nolasco did not pitch well yesterday, but he was not terrible, either. In fact, he wasn't bad at all when not pitching to batters named Alejandro De Aza. Unfortunately, the White Sox have a batter with that name, so his line is six innings, ten hits, two walks, and five runs. He did strike out four.
The Twins bullpen did well. They threw two scoreless innings, giving up one hit and striking out two, both by Anthony Swarzak.
On the batting side, the Twins scored three runs, not what you want but a respectable total against Chris Sale, who actually is an Opening Day Pitcher. Kurt Suzuki drove in all three runs with a pair of two-out singles. Based on current trends, I predict Suzuki will bat .500 this season and drive in 486 runs, all on two-out singles. It's good to see that the Twins finally have a catcher who can hit, especially in the clutch. Chris Colabello and Aaron Hicks also contributed two hits apiece, although not being veterans, they were not able to drive in runs with their hits. They will learn eventually, I'm sure.
Gardy used Eduardo Escobar as a pinch-hitter for Pedro Florimon late in the game. Since Sale was still in the game, the only logical conclusion is that Gardy thinks Escobar is a better batter than Florimon, a thought I agree with. The question is, is Florimon a clearly superior fielder to Escobar? Because if he's not, there's no justification for making Florimon the regular. I'm not arguing for a specific answer--I don't know the answer, and am interested in others' thoughts on the subject.
So, baseball is back! It feels really good to say that. The outcome wasn't what we wanted, but it's a long season. No team has ever gone 162-0, and this season's edition of the Twins won't be the first. I guess we'll just have to settle for 161-1!