Brian Duensing could return on Thursday.

CHICAGO -- Twins left-hander Brian Duensing was placed on the paternity list on Monday, and right-hander Michael Tonkin was recalled from Triple-A Rochester to take his spot on the roster.

Duensing, who flew back home to Omaha, Neb., on Saturday night, is expecting his second child with his wife, Lisa. Duensing is expected to be on paternity leave for three days, so he could return in time for the third game of the season against the White Sox on Thursday.

"I think the doctors decided a few days ago that everything was good, but they didn't want to wait any longer and [wanted to] induce today," Twins assistant general manager Rob Antony said. "He came in and felt bad, but we told him not to worry about it."

With Duensing on paternity leave, it gives Tonkin his first chance to be on an Opening Day roster after originally being optioned to Rochester on Monday.

Tonkin, 24, had an impressive showing in Spring Training, as he didn't allow a run in seven appearances. The 6-foot-7 right-hander gave up just three hits over 8 1/3 innings, striking out five and walking two.

"Tonkin could've been on my baseball team and on this staff, just like a lot of other guys we sent out this spring," Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said. "I've got no worries. We just want Deuce to go home and take care of his wife and the baby. It's a beautiful thing for that. I know he wants to be here, but there are more important things than that. It's an exciting moment, so we want him to be his wife. And we'll have Tonkin here, so we're happy about that. I'm not afraid to put him anywhere."

Nolasco excited to take ball in opener

PIT@MIN: Nolasco allows one hit in four innings

CHICAGO -- After making Opening Day starts with the Marlins in 2009 and '13, Ricky Nolasco said he's ready for his first such honor with the Twins on Monday against the White Sox at 3:10 p.m. CT.

Nolasco, who joined the Twins on a four-year deal worth $49 million this offseason, attended Sunday's optional workout at U.S. Cellular Field and said he's ready for the season to get started.

March 31: White Sox 5, Twins 3
W: Sale   L: Nolasco   SV: Lindstrom
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Opening Day MLBlog

"I think everybody is," Nolasco said. "We've been at it for a long time in spring. We're excited to get out of Fort Myers. It's a beautiful day today, and hopefully this continues tomorrow. Everybody is excited to get started, and Opening Day is always exciting."

Nolasco, 31, added that he's looking forward to taking the mound in the regular-season opener, and he wants to help the Twins get out on the right foot after their struggles the last three seasons.

"Opening Day is special," Nolasco said. "For some guys, it's their first Opening Day or whatnot. So it's not just another start. But mentally, I'm going to take it as another start and do what I can to make not too big of a deal out of it. But with the flyovers and the fans, it kind of gets you to another level. But once you cross the lines into the field, everything starts to feel natural. So it's important for us to get off to a good start."

Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said Nolasco will have no pitch-count limitations in his first start after giving up just one hit over four innings in his final Grapefruit League start against the Pirates on Wednesday.

"Ricky is game on," Gardenhire said. "He's ready. I'm not worried about him one bit. He'll go until he says he's tired."

Worth noting

• The Twins held an informal workout at U.S. Cellular Field on Sunday in advance of Monday's Opening Day game against the White Sox at 3:10 p.m. CT. The workout wasn't mandatory but was attended by just about every player on the roster. Twins pitchers played catch in the outfield, while position players hit in the cages. The infield wasn't ready for batting practice, as the grounds crew is still working to get it ready for Opening Day.

• Gardenhire wouldn't reveal his Opening Day lineup for Monday's game against the White Sox. Left-hander Chris Sale will start for Chicago, but Gardenhire wouldn't offer any hints on the lineup.

"I don't want to give them any information," Gardenhire joked. "I want them to have search for it."

• With Nolasco starting for the Twins on Monday, White Sox first baseman Paul Konerko said he won't start on Opening Day. Konerko is entering his final season with the White Sox, and he is expected to only see action against left-handed pitchers this year. Jose Abreu will start at first base, while Adam Dunn will serve as designated hitter on Monday.