Rangers manager Jeff Banister officially named Yu Darvish the clubs’ Opening Day starter against the Cleveland Indians April 3 at Globe Life Park.
That news shouldn’t come as a surprise, but did you know he’s the ninth pitcher in the past nine seasons to take the mound in the Rangers’ opener?
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It’s the first time Darvish has been given the honor as a Rangers’ pitcher but he started five consecutive openers in Japan (2007 -11).
The last time a Rangers’ pitcher started consecutive Opening Days was 2009, when Kevin Millwood started his fourth consecutive for the club.
Opening Day history
Here’s a look at how the Rangers’ Opening Day starters have fared the past eight seasons:
2016: Cole Hamels
The left-hander was magnificent in his lone opener for the Rangers. He held the Mariners to two runs on four hits and struck out eight over seven innings to earn the win at Globe Life Park
2015: Yovani Gallardo
The hometown hero from Fort Worth struggled a tad in the opener in Oakland. The A’s scored four runs on six hits and a walk over four innings. Gallardo struck out five but a two-run homer by Ben Zobrist in the first was all Oakland needed against the one-hit Rangers.
2014: Tanner Scheppers
The reliever turned starter (and then back again) struggled against the Phillies, but he wasn’t alone. Pitchers from both teams, including Philadelphia ace Cliff Lee, were blown up in the Phillies’ 14-10 win at Globe Life Park. Scheppers allowed seven runs on eight hits and three walks over four innings. Pedro Figueroa took the loss after replacing him and surrendering four runs in 1 2/3.
2013: Matt Harrison
The lefty took the loss after allowing six runs (five earned) on six hit and three walks in 5 2/3 against the Astros at Minute Maid Park. Harrison struck out nine. A three-run homer by Rick Ankiel off Rangers’ reliever Derek Lowe in the sixth put the game out of reach.
2012: Colby Lewis
In his lone Opening Day start for the Rangers, Lewis earned the win after holding the White Sox to two runs on seven hits and a walk. He struck out nine in six innings and received scoreless innings of relief from Alexi Ogando, Mike Adams and Joe Nathan in a 3-2 win at Globe Life Park.
2011: C.J. Wilson
The left-hander allowed four runs (two earned) on six hits and two walks and didn’t figure in the decision after 5 2/3 innings at Globe Life Park. Darren Oliver blew the save in the eighth but earned the win against the Red Sox at Globe Life Park.
2010: Scott Feldman
Feldman allowed a two-run homer to Vernon Wells in the first against Blue Jays but settled down and left with the game tied 3-3 after seven innings. He held the Jays to five hits, walked none and struck out three at Globe Life Park. Neftali Feliz struggled in the eighth and allowed the Red Sox to take a 4-3 lead but a two-run rally in the bottom of the ninth, including doubles by Michael Young and Vladimir Guerrero, and a walk-off single by Jarrod Saltalamacchia gave the Rangers a 5-4 win.
2009: Kevin Millwood
In his fourth consecutive Opening Day start, Millwood was outstanding. He earned the win after holding the Indians to a run on five hits and a walk over seven innings. The only run he allowed scored on a wild pitch in the seventh. C.J. Wilson and Frank Francisco both worked perfect innings of relief to close out the 9-1 win at Globe Life Park. Six of the Rangers’ nine starters had at least two hits, incuding Ian Kinsler with three.