Yu Darvish is the Texas Rangers’ starting pitcher for Opening Day, per John Blake on Twitter. Darvish is starting on Opening Day for the first time in his Rangers career.
There was some question as to whether the Opening Day starting pitcher would be Darvish or Cole Hamels, with some thinking Hamels had the advantage, due to his being the veteran who would be deferred to as a matter of giving him appropriate veteran respect. However, it had also been suggested that, with the Rangers interested in extending Yu Darvish, who is a free agent after the season, they might want to make him the Opening Day starter as a show of appreciation and respect to him, and as a way to give a “soft” indication of the importance they feel he represents for the team.
Regardless of whether it was going to be Yu then Cole or Cole then Yu, the Rangers were going to be well situated to start the season.
The Rangers open at home on Monday, April 3, at 6:05 p.m. against the Cleveland Indians. Hamels will presumably start game two, on Tuesday, April 4, against Cleveland, with Martin Perez likely starting the final game of the first series of the season on Wednesday, April 5.