Stephen Strasburg scheduled to start Thursday

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Stephen Strasburg was scratched from his scheduled start Friday with forearm soreness, but the Nationals insisted at the time that it was minor and sure enough Chase Hughes of reports that he’s slated to rejoin the rotation Thursday.

Strasburg threw a problem-free bullpen session Monday to get clearance for the start, which would be against the Marlins in Washington. He faced Miami on September 8, allowing four runs in six innings.

Strasburg has already surpassed last season’s abbreviated workload by 11 innings and figures to wind up with around 180-185 total innings if he avoids any further arm problems.

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.