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.
Phillies catcher Wilson Ramos could join the team in Wednesday for the last game of the club’s two-game set against the Red Sox, Matt Breen of the Philadelphia Inquirer reports. Manager Gabe Kapler said, “Nothing is off the table.”
Ramos has been on a rehab assignment with Advanced-A Clearwater, recovering from a strained left hamstring he suffered just ahead of the All-Star break when he was with the Rays. The Phillies acquired him on July 31 prior to the non-waiver trade deadline for a player to be named later.
Prior to the injury, Ramos was batting a healthy .297/.346/.488 with 14 home runs and 53 RBI in 315 plate appearances. His arrival will likely mean back-up catcher Andrew Knapp gets sent down to Triple-A Lehigh Valley. Ramos could also draw the lion’s share of the playing time behind the plate, bumping first-string catcher Jorge Alfaro down on the depth chart.