Monday newsletter time: Opening Day starts? Jacob deGrom is a big fan
(AP photo/Abbie Parr)
Opening Day is Thursday. It’s probably too late to make plans, though your friendly neighborhood second-hand ticket broker is willing to make you a deal.
Prices might have gone up as of Friday, when the Rangers announced that right-hander Jacob deGrom will be starting on Opening Day. His Rangers debut will be his third career start in a season opener.
He likes it.
“I enjoy it,” deGrom said Saturday after the Rangers’ spring finale.
He called the nod an honor and said he tries to treat it like just another game, emphasis on tries. It’s not all that easy to do.
It will be if he pitches as he did Saturday, tossing 3 2/3 scoreless innings on two hits and two walks with six strikeout.
DeGrom threw 54 pitches, and believes he can give the Rangers 75 against the Phillies at Globe Life Field. That should get him into the fifth inning but no further. He hasn’t been up and down five times yet, and it isn’t likely to happen Thursday.
It might take another turn through the rotation until he’s built up, but that’s OK. It’s early and the Rangers are planning to carry multiple multi-inning relievers, so there’s no need to push anything with a pitcher who is A) making the kind of money deGrom is, B) has the kind of injury history deGrom has, and C) is carrying the championship hopes of his team.
Seventy-five deGrom pitches should still be highly entertaining. Watching him Saturday at Surprise Stadium sure was.
Call your friendly neighborhood second-hand ticket broker.
There’s a saying in baseball whenever there’s a roster backlog: Things usually work themselves out.
That could be the case with the Rangers as they sort through their final roster decisions.
It’s possible that they will need to create two spots on the 40-man roster, one for right-handed reliever Ian Kennedy and another for outfielder Travis Jankowski. It’s also possible that the Rangers sign one of those two or neither of them.
The Rangers have a full 40-man, but they also have two potential candidates for the 60-day injured list — right-handers Glenn Otto and Jake Odorizzi.
Otto has been shut down for three weeks with a shoulder strain, and it will take at least four weeks for him to get built up to carry a starter’s workload. That’s late May.
General manager Chris Young said that Odorizzi will also return later than sooner as the Rangers explore reasons for his pronounced arm fatigue. There might be something wrong structurally that’s causing the fatigue.
Young said that Otto could hit the 60, but that hasn’t been determined. It would seem that Odorizzi could, too.
See? These roster things usually work themselves out.
Spring training is over, and as always it was fun. Nothing that happened changed my opinion that spring training is my favorite part of the season. It’s all downhill from here. But it will be a slow journey, 162 games’ worth. It all starts Thursday, and there’s still stuff to decide before the Rangers open the 2023 season. Some of that is part of our latest content, in case you missed it.
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