Kyle Gibson tosses eight shutout innings, lowers ERA to 0.93


Twins right-hander Kyle Gibson was fantastic this afternoon against the Blue Jays, shutting them out for eight innings of four-hit ball. Gibson struck out four, walked one, and lowered his ERA to 0.93 on the season.

It’s only three starts, of course, so even a sub-1.00 ERA isn’t a huge deal or anything, but compared to what a mess Gibson was during his MLB debut last season it’s a very encouraging development for the Twins and their former first-round pick.

Last season, as a 25-year-old rookie coming back from Tommy John elbow surgery, Gibson threw 51 innings with a 6.53 ERA and .327 opponents’ batting average. His secondary numbers don’t match the ERA–although no one’s secondary numbers are going to match a 0.93 ERA–but Gibson is back to getting tons of ground balls and today versus Toronto he walked zero batters after putting Jose Bautista on in the first inning.

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.