2023 MLB Opening Day: Probable starting pitchers for all 30 teams on the schedule
Even as the starting pitcher fights marginalization, lobbies to face a lineup a third time a night and works against the shifting winds of the game, there's still one distinction every one aims for: Opening Day starter.
While its function is limited - alignments will change dozens of times over the course of the season - the symbolism remains. There's a little extra juice taking the ball on a crisp spring day with bunting adorning the facades and myriad luminaries on hand, all before the grind of the season settles in.
Friday, Major League Baseball released the matchups of all 15 scheduled openers. Most of them were a fait accompli, and a majority of games will feature repeat honorees. A look at the 30 arms aligned for opening-day starts when all clubs are set to open the season March 30:
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Opening Day pitchers, schedule:
All times ET
Braves at Nationals, 1:05, Nationals Park
Matchup: LH Max Fried (14-7, 2.48 ERA in 2022) vs. LH Patrick Corbin (6-19, 6.31).
Notable: Corbin led the majors in losses, hits (210) and earned runs (107); Fried is coming off consecutive 14-7 seasons.
Giants at Yankees, 1:05, Yankee Stadium
Matchup: RH Logan Webb (15-9, 2.90) vs. RH Gerrit Cole (13-8, 3.50)
Notable: Cole's 257 strikeouts led the majors.
Orioles at Red Sox, 2:10, Fenway Park
Matchup: RH Kyle Gibson (10-8, 5.05 with Phillies) vs. RH Corey Kluber (10-10, 4.34 with Rays)
Notable: Kluber is pitching for his fifth team in as many years and will be the first Red Sox since David Price in 2016 to make his Boston debut on Opening Day
Brewers at Cubs, 2:20, Wrigley Field
Matchup: RH Corbin Burnes (12-8, 2.94) vs. RH Marcus Stroman (6-7, 3.50)
Notable: Stroman makes his first Opening Day start since 2019 in Toronto.
Tigers at Rays, 3:10, Tropicana Field
Matchup: LH Eduardo Rodriguez (5-5, 4.05) vs. LH Shane McClanahan (12-8, 2.54)
Notable: McClanahan was the AL starter in the 2022 All-Star Game.
Phillies at Rangers, 4:05, Globe Life Park
Matchup: RH Aaron Nola (11-13, 3.25) vs. RH Jacob deGrom (5-4, 3.08 with Mets)
Notable: Only Robin Roberts (12) and Steve Carlton (10) have started more Phillies Opening Days than Nola's six.
Mets at Marlins, 4:10, loanDepot Park
Matchup: RH Max Scherzer (11-5, 2.29) vs. RH Sandy Alcantara (14-9, 2.28)
Notable: Alcantara is the reigning NL Cy Young Award winner and his duel with three-time winner Scherzer marks the second Opening Day pitting past honorees. Cleveland's Shane Bieber (AL 2020) and Kansas City's Zack Greinke (2009) squared off last year.
Pirates at Reds, 4:10, Great American Ballpark
Matchup: Pirates RH Mitch Keller (5-12, 3.91) vs. Reds RH Hunter Greene (5-13, 4.44)
Notable: Greene, 23, becomes the youngest Reds Opening Day starter since 22-year-old Frank Pastore in 1980.
Blue Jays at Cardinals, 4:10, Busch Stadium
Matchup: RH Alek Manoah (16-7, 2.24) vs. RH Miles Mikolas (12-13, 3.29)
Notable: Both clubs are coming off home losses in the AL and NL wild-card playoff series.
Twins at Royals, 4:10, Kauffman Stadium
Matchup: RH Pablo Lopez (10-10, 3.75) vs. RH Zack Greinke (4-9, 3.68)
Notable: Greinke is making his seventh Opening Day start, including a pair of nods for the Diamondbacks and Astros.
White Sox at Astros, 7:08, Minute Maid Park
Matchup: RH Dylan Cease (14-8, 2.20) vs. LH Framber Valdez (17-6, 2.82)
Notable: Cease and Valdez finished second and fifth, respectively, in the 2022 AL Cy Young race.
Rockies at Padres, 9:40, Petco Park
Matchup: RH German Marquez (9-13, 4.95) vs. LH Blake Snell (8-10, 3.38)
Notable: Marquez is the first three-time Opening Day starter in Rockies history.
Angels at A's, 10:07, Oakland Coliseum
Matchup: RH Shohei Ohtani (15-9, 2.33 ERA) vs. LH Kyle Muller (1-1, 8.03 with Braves)
Notable: Ohtani is coming off first- and second-place AL MVP finishes the past two seasons.
D-backs at Dodgers, 10:10, Dodger Stadium
Matchup: RH Zac Gallen (12-4, 2.54 ERA) vs. LH Julio Urías (17-7, 2.16 ERA)
Notable: Urías, 26, becomes the first Mexican to start Opening Day for the Dodgers since Fernando Valenzuela in 1988.
Guardians at Mariners, 10:10, T-Mobile Park
Matchup: RH Shane Bieber (13-8, 2.88 ERA) vs RH Luis Castillo (8-6 2.99 ERA)
Notable: Hall of Famers Bob Feller and Gaylord Perry have just one more opening-day start in Cleveland's history than Bieber's five.
This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: 2023 MLB Opening Day: Starting pitchers for all 30 teams on schedule