Eight former Cy Young Award winners are scheduled to start Opening Day next Thursday, including a matchup between reigning National League winner Sandy Alcantara and three-time honoree Max Scherzer, whose New York Mets travel to face the Miami Marlins.
Major League Baseball teams announced their Opening Day starters Friday as part of an effort by the league to gin up interest in the first game of a transformative season in which the game will include a pitch clock.
The slate features several first-class duels — and will include two-time winner Jacob deGrom, whose debut with the Texas Rangers was in doubt after tightness in his left side delayed his first spring training start. Philadelphia Phillies ace Aaron Nola, fresh off a World Series appearance, will get his sixth consecutive Opening Day start — the longest current active streak — and oppose the two-time Cy Young winner in a pairing of longtime NL East foes.
Nine teams had announced their starters before Friday. That list includes the Los Angeles Angels, with Shohei Ohtani coming off his World Baseball Classic MVP award, as well as the New York Yankees and San Francisco Giants, who will pit Gerrit Cole against Logan Webb.
Some of the other best matchups include:
Among the other Cy Young winners who will kick off their team’s season:
Milwaukee‘s Corbin Burnes, an All-Star each of the last two seasons and the 2021 NL Cy Young winner, will go against the Chicago Cubs‘ Marcus Stroman, who previously started Opening Day twice;
Blake Snell, the 2018 AL honoree, gets the start for San Diego at a packed Petco Park against Colorado‘s German Marquez, who will get the ball for the third time on Opening Day;
Two-time winner Corey Kluber, whose Boston Red Sox will host Baltimore‘s Kyle Gibson;
Zack Greinke, who will make his third Opening Day start for Kansas City and fifth overall, will oppose Minnesota Twins right-hander Pablo Lopez, taking the mound for the first time to start a season.
Atlanta‘s Max Fried and Washington‘s Patrick Corbin both will start for the third time on Opening Day as the Nationals host the Braves. The rest of the matchups feature at least one pitcher commencing the season for the first time:
MLB Opening Day slate to feature eight Cy Young Award winners