The A’s today tried playing Brandon Moss at first, Brandon Hicks at second and Brandon Inge at third. And they got a win anyway.
Of course, the Brandons didn’t really contribute, combining to go 0-for-9 with five strikeouts. Inge also committed an error. Jarrod Parker was able to overcome it all, though, stirking out nine over seven innings in the 2-1 defeat of the Mariners.
The three Brandons actually batted consecutively in the sixth-through-eighth spots in the order. It set up the exciting possibility that Brandon League might get to pitch to all of them. However, the Mariners reliever faced only Hicks while getting five outs in the contest.
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.