Andy Pettitte gets standing ovation, pitches scoreless inning


Andy Pettitte took the mound for an inning against the Mets in his spring debut Wednesday and retired three of the four hitters he faced, allowing just a single in the process.

“It felt good to be able to get out there and get the inning in, especially in a big league game” he said. “It definitely felt a little weird, there’s no doubt about it. Once I got out there, it was just like you never left. It was fun.”

Pettitte received a standing ovation while coming out to pitch the sixth inning. Prospect Cory Vaughn led off the frame with a hit, but Pettitte was able to work around it.

“Obviously, anytime you get fans to cheer for you, that’s a good thing,” he said. “It’s all coming back. I feel like the stuff is there. I just have to build stamina.”

Pettitte, attempting a comeback after a brief one-year retirement,  is expected to spend the next month working his way through the Yankees’ minor league system. If all goes well, he could join the rotation at the beginning of May.

Chris Sale will start on Opening Day for Red Sox

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No surprise here: Chris Sale will start on Opening Day for the Red Sox, Pete Abraham of The Boston Globe reports. The Red Sox open the season on March 29 in Tampa Bay against the Rays. Sale will oppose Chris Archer.

Sale, 28, is the fifth different Opening Day starter the Red Sox have had in as many years, preceded by Rick Porcello, David Price, Clay Buchholz, and Jon Lester. Sale started on Opening Day for the White Sox in 2013, ’14, and ’16.

Sale finished second in AL Cy Young Award balloting last year and finished ninth for AL MVP. He went 17-8 with a 2.90 ERA and a 308/43 K/BB ratio in 214 1/3 innings. Sale and Clayton Kershaw (2015) are the only pitchers to strike out 300 or more batters in a season dating back to 2003.