Fister to pitch home opener, rotation order set
At long last, the Tigers rotation order is out. Anibal Sanchez and Rick Porcello will follow Justin Verlander and start Wednesday and Thursday in Minnesota. Doug Fister gets the honor of pitching the home opener next Friday against the Yankees. Max Scherzer be the last starter to make his season debut, pitching next Saturday against the Yankees.
It’s a shuffle of sorts in that Porcello, the “fifth starter” in that he won the competition for the only open rotation spot, will pitch the third game of the season. Leyland had said for a while that he would use all five starters the first time through the rotation, rather than use the off-day to skip one of his starters. As he cautioned the other day, Porcello isn’t the fifth starter. He’s one of five starters.
Scherzer looked for a time like he was in line to pitch the home opener. He’ll still get to pitch at Comerica Park, and he’ll actually get a network TV game on that first Saturday. By moving to the fifth game, his next start would be in Oakland at the start of the Tigers’ West Coast trip in two weeks.