Clark Spencer of the Miami Herald is reporting that Marlins right-hander Jose Fernandez has been named the team’s Opening Day starter by manager Mike Redmond, an announcement that shocks no one. The Marlins open up the regular season on March 31 at home against the Rockies.
Fernandez took home NL Rookie of the Year honors and finished third in NL Cy Young balloting last season after posting a 2.19 ERA in 172 2/3 innings. The 21-year-old Cuban should be the ace of the Marlins’ staff for many more years to come.
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.