Alex Rodriguez passes Ken Griffey Jr., now 5th on homer list


Alex Rodriguez launched his 631st career homer over the Green Monster on Friday, moving him past Ken Griffey Jr. on the all-time list:

1. Barry Bonds – 762
2. Hank Aaron – 755
3. Babe Ruth – 714
4. Willie Mays – 660
5. Alex Rodriguez – 631
6. Ken Griffey Jr. – 630
7. Sammy Sosa – 609
8. Jim Thome – 604
9. Frank Robinson – 586
10. Mark McGwire – 583

The homer was A-Rod’s second of 2012. He’ll need 30 more in order to overtake Mays this year. Rodriguez finished with 30 exactly in both 2009 and 2010 and 16 in 99 games last season, so Mays’ mark may be another year away.

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.