Ken Rosenthal reports that the Cubs will promote top catching prospect Willson Contreras before tomorrow’s game.
Contreras is one of the game’s top prospects and he’s currently raking at Triple-A Iowa, boasting a .350/.439/.591 batting line with nine homers and 16 doubles in 239 plate appearances this season. How much he’ll play in Chicago is an open question, however, given that they already have two catchers in Miguel Montero and David Ross. Rosenthal says that the Cubs will carry three catchers for now. Worth noting that the Cubs do not play an interleague game until after the All-Star break, so DHing Contreras to see how his bat plays is not really an option for a while.
Given David Ross’ popularity in the clubhouse, status as a team leader and given how much Cubs pitchers like throwing to him (particularly Jon Lester), it seems more likely that Montero will get some more time on the pine in the short term.
Dodgers manager Dave Roberts confirmed it in March and he confirmed it again on Tuesday: Clayton Kershaw will start on Opening Day, Jorge Castillo of The Los Angeles Times reports.
The Dodgers are one of four teams that will open the 60-game regular season schedule on July 23; everyone else begins play on the 24th. With a 10 PM ET start, the Dodgers will host the Giants at Dodger Stadium.
Johnny Cueto will likely pitch opposite Kershaw for the Giants. Cueto was named the Giants’ Opening Day starter on March 11, before the league shut down due to the coronavirus pandemic. Manager Gabe Kapler hasn’t yet officially named an Opening Day starter for the makeshift season.
Kershaw, 32, made the Opening Day start eight consecutive times for the Dodgers from 2011-18. Hyun-Jin Ryu, now a Blue Jay, pitched on Opening Day last season for the Dodgers. Last year, Kershaw logged 178 1/3 innings over 28 starts and one relief appearance, his highest innings total since 2015. He went 16-5 with a 3.03 ERA, 189 strikeouts, and 41 walks.