| Back Home | Stats | Pictures | Collectibles | Profile | Moose Watch | News/Highlights |
MINNEAPOLIS (Ticker) -- A start against the Minnesota Twins was just what Mike Mussina needed to get back on track.
Mussina bounced back from three consecutive losses with a three-hit shutout as the New York Yankees cruised to a 4-0 victory over the Minnesota Twins.
Mussina (2-3) threw just 99 pitches -- 69 for strikes -- and did not allow a walk while striking out 10 en route to his second straight shutout against Minnesota.
"It was pretty obvious Mr. Mussina dominated the game," Twins manager Tom Kelly said. "He pitched ahead in the count basically the whole game."
His last shutout came against the Twins on August 1, 2000, when he allowed just one hit and struck out a career-high 15 as a member of the Orioles. He improved to 17-2 lifetime against Minnesota.
"Some teams you just pitch well against," Mussina said. "You feel comfortable for whatever reason, you can't explain it."
Mussina allowed only one batter to reach second base and seemed to get stronger as the game went on, retiring the last 14 batters he faced and 21 of the last 22.
Minnesota had only one runner reach second base in the contest. In the second inning, Brian Buchanan singled with one out and Torii Hunter had a two-out single before Mussina retired Tom Prince on a groundout.
"Early on he was feeling his way, but he got on a roll," New York manager Joe Torre said. "It was a reverse of what (Brad) Radke did to us us last night."
The Yankees got all the runs they needed in the second inning when Bernie Williams singled off Twins starter Eric Milton (3-2) to score rookie Alfonso Soriano, who tied a career-high with four hits.
"It was big that we went out and scored first," Mussina said. "We put the pressure on them. I had a good idea of what I wanted to do."
"The combination of Mussina and the experience with the bats was too much for us tonight," Kelly said. "They really made our pitcher work."
Williams batted second in a revamped Yankee lineup that featured Derek Jeter hitting third and Tino Martinez in the cleanup spot.
"Bernie will hit fourth (tomorrow)," Torre said. "This is just a day for me to play around because Paulie (O'Neill) was out of the lineup."
David Justice had a solo home run off Milton to lead off the sixth inning and give the Yankees a 2-0 lead.
Milton, a former Yankee prospect who was traded to Minnesota in the deal for Chuck Knoblauch in 1998, allowed two runs and eight hits in six innings.
Jorge Posada had an RBI single off reliever Hector Carrasco in the seventh inning and added a run-scoring single in the ninth off Travis Miller to cap the scoring.