Jose Ramirez kicked things off for the Indians in unusual fashion on Sunday, returning a 3-2 fastball from Tigers’ southpaw Chad Bell to give the club a one-run lead in the first inning. The ball traveled an estimated 361 feet, per Statcast’s calculations, but needed an extra push to clear the fence in left field. It bounced twice off the top of the wall before eventually tipping away from the field.
There to lend a helping hand? Tigers’ left fielder Mikie Mahtook, who reached for the ball twice before inadvertently pushing it over the wall — and causing a little frustration in Detroit’s bullpen, too.
Ramirez returned in the third inning with a leadoff double, his 45th of the season, and hustled home to score on a comebacker off of Carlos Santana‘s bat. The Indians currently lead the Tigers 4-1 in the top of the fourth.
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.