There could be some protestors on hand at Tropicana Field today


Marc Topkin of the Tampa Bay Times passes along word that there could be some protesters on the field during today’s Athletics-Rays game at Tropicana Field. It’s apparently related to the Republican National Convention, which will take over the stadium beginning tomorrow.

Correct me if I’m wrong here, but isn’t the element of surprise pretty key in a flash mob? Cover is already blown, you guys. Anyway, Topkin notes that extra security is in place to deal with the potential situation and players have been advised to avoid conflict.

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.