Pablo Sandoval makes weight, avoids benching


This story about Pablo Sandoval’s struggle with his weight is not a repeat from two weeks ago, 2012, 2011, 2010 …

Late last week, Bochy told Sandoval he would bench him if the Panda didn’t tip the scales at a certain weight by Saturday’s Cactus League opener. “To his credit, he did,” Bochy said. “Although to be honest, I’m not sure how.”

My guess: some variation of the old reliable “one kid on another kid’s shoulders, both covered up by a trench coat” routine. Works every time.

I’m gonna be in Scottsdale to visit the Giants on Thursday. While I’m there I’ll give you my annual “Pablo Sandoval without his shirt on” report.

Chris Sale will start on Opening Day for Red Sox

Bob Levey/Getty Images

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.