There will be plenty of surprises in the coming weeks for the Red Sox. This was not one of them.
After the Red Sox' 12-6 win over the Pirates Tuesday, manager Alex Cora announced Chris Sale would be his Opening Day starter. Sale will go up against the Rays in St. Petersburg, Fla. March 29.
It will be Sale's fifth Opening Day start, and second in as many seasons with the Red Sox.
Cora also presented the next three spots in the rotation, with David Price following Sale and Rick Porcello getting the third game of the season (which is slated to be a bullpen game for the Rays).
After Porcello, Cora suggested that Brian Johnson seems to have the inside track on Game 4 or 5 (which would be in Miami) with Steven Wright, Eduardo Rodriguez and Drew Pomeranz all coming back from injury.
"It all depends where we go and where everybody else is. We’ll decide, obviously at the end of the week, and we’ll take a look at matchups," Cora told reporters. "If that’s the case, we’ll see who he matches up better with – if it’s the Rays or the Marlins. Right now, with everything that’s going on, obviously we’re leaving the door open for the other guys but we have to extend him and keep him on plan. He’s still going to the run the bases just in case. And he can hit, supposedly, in college."