Somebody at MLB has a sense of humor, or knack for generating early-season interest in the sport, as the league office has pitted the Texas Rangers against their fiercest rival on Opening Day next season.
The Rangers will play host to the Houston Astros on March 29, a Thursday, to kick off a four-game season-opening series at Globe Life Park. The rivalry between the Rangers and Astros has taken off the past three seasons, with the postseason contenders and American League West foes playing each other 19 times.
The 2018 schedule was released Tuesday morning. The March 29 opener is the earliest in club history.
The Rangers will finish the season with a seven-game road trip against two more division foes, the Los Angeles Angels (Sept. 24-26) and the Seattle Mariners (Sept. 27-30).
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They will face the National League West in interleague play, with the Colorado Rockies, San Diego Padres and Los Angeles Dodgers coming to Arlington. The Rangers will play games at San Diego and San Francisco.
Their “natural” rival this season is the Arizona Diamondbacks, and the clubs will play four times.
The Rangers will host the Boston Red Sox on May 3-6 and the New York Yankees on May 21-23.