Max Scherzer to miss start with hamstring injury

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Last week Max Scherzer pitched with a heavy heart, starting a game three days after his brother’s death, but now the Tigers right-hander will miss at least one turn in the rotation with a hamstring injury.

Scherzer was scheduled to start today versus Minnesota, but Duane Below will make the start instead. General manager Dave Dombrowski told Anthony Odoard of that the Tigers “have confidence” that Scherzer will remain on the active roster and start Sunday.

He apparently suffered the injury while doing some between-starts running and wasn’t happy with how it felt when testing it with a bullpen session yesterday.

Scherzer leads the American League with 11.4 strikeouts per nine innings, but for the second straight season he’s allowed opponents to bat above .270 with a disappointing ERA (4.98). He has been much improved since a brutal April, posting a 3.95 ERA and 87/19 K/BB ratio in 66 innings since May 1.

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.