Molitor adds first managerial win to career tally
Players celebrate Hall of Famer's milestone
CHICAGO -- His players were waiting for him after the game. They surprised him at the top of the dugout stairs after he returned from a postgame interview and greeted him with a beer shower.
"It was unexpected, but it was nice," Paul Molitor said.
Molitor earned his first managerial victory as his Twins beat the White Sox, 6-0, on Friday.
Cheers were ringing from the Twins locker room minutes after the game ended.
"I don't remember the last time I had any kind of an alcohol shower," said Molitor, who became the club's manager on Nov. 4. "It probably had to be 20-some years ago. Hopefully, I'll get an opportunity to do that again someday."
Molitor, who is in his first year of managing at any level, said he will keep a lineup card and possibly game balls as mementos. His cell phone was buzzing with messages, but his postgame celebration plans were simple.
"I don't have any plans," he said. "Going back to the hotel, relax and get ready for another day."
Tommy Milone threw 7 2/3 scoreless innings for the club's first quality start of the season and the offense came alive to give Molitor the milestone. The Twins (1-3) bounced back after they scored one run in three losses against the Tigers to start the season.
"You try to build relationships with your players throughout the spring, they kind of support you like that and it makes you feel really good," Molitor said. "It's one game, but your first win as a manager, our first win of the season, it feels good to get that one out of the way."
The players played music, danced and showered Molitor before he delivered a short speech, second baseman Brian Dozier said.
"It's pretty exciting," Dozier said. "[He] probably doesn't have very many more firsts in this game, pretty much done it all. That's pretty special."
Molitor has displayed passion and dedication during his brief time on the job.
"The way we started the season in Detroit, it didn't go too well. He's still smiling," catcher Kurt Suzuki said. "He's been there. His credentials … he has a Hall of Fame career. To be able to get that, the amount he puts into the team and the effort, how he's behind every player, it's special."